Glossary of Terms

These terms are defined specifically for transcommunication and the Implicit Cosmology.

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Academic Paywall: The Academic-layperson partition is amplified by the professional and university library systems in which paid membership is necessary to access scholarly papers, effectively assuring that most frontier subject researchers do not have access to results of applicable research even though it is often publicly funded.

Academic-Layperson Partition: A phrase used here to describe the functional separation of academia from laypeople. The effect is that people, who have a doctorate degree from an accredited institution, tend to shun people who do not. For fields of study in which practical experience, ability and understanding rests with lay people or citizen scientists, this partition often produces “peer reviewed” studies which portray a false image of the subject.

After Death Communication: After Death Communication or ADC is a concept popularized by Bill and Judy Guggenheim in their book, Hello from Heaven. From their website: ADC is defined as “…a spiritual experience, which occurs when you are contacted directly and spontaneously by a deceased family member or friend, without the use of psychics, mediums, rituals or devices of any kind.” The important points in this explanation are that ADCs are spontaneous and instruments are not required. They do include phone calls as a type, but they are very definite that EVP is not included in the list. See: IADC

From the ADC website, here are the twelve most frequent types of after-death communication people report having with their deceased loved ones:

Sensing A Presence; Hearing A Voice; Feeling A Touch; Smelling A Fragrance; Visual Experiences; Visions; Twilight Experiences; ADC Experiences While Asleep; Out-Of-Body ADCs; Telephone Calls; Physical Phenomena; and, Symbolic ADCs
          Guggenheim, Bill and Judy—Hello From Heaven, Bantam Books, 1996,

Agnosia: Loss of the ability to interpret sensory stimuli, such as sounds or images. Agnosia was once considered a rare condition, but since the work with inattention blindness, it has become clear that it is much more common than previously thought.

Agreement: See Perceptual Agreement

Anomalistic Psychology: The study of human behavior and ostensibly paranormal phenomena with the assumption that no paranormal phenomena are involved. Research in this area is often reported as an academic study, but fails to even consider a paranormal hypothesis. Essentially, a field of study intended to debunk things paranormal.

Apologists: A person who speaks in defense of someone or something. This is an important form of public education if the apologist is knowledgeable about the subject and has the objective of informing and not indoctrinating. In some cases, such as in the case of skeptics who brand ideas they think mainstream science does not support as pseudoscience. The science apologist is more frequently uninformed and speaking as an ideologue.

Apophenia: The perception of patterns or connections where none exist. It may be the underlying natural response that leads a person to hear distant voices or music in noise that can almost be understood, but that on closer examination, do not exist and cannot be objectively recorded. It appears to be natural for our mind to seek to find order in chaotic information and that order comes from our worldview; making the unexplained familiar. See: Pareidolia and Gestalt.

Apparition: The anomalous appearance of a discarnate person; usually a spontaneous visual phenomenon.  Apparitions seem more likely to manifest in moments of crisis and the message given by them is usually brief as if the contact field is unfocused. Apparitions may appear quite solid and yet objects may be seen beyond them. They also may be accompanied by bright light.


An apport received by the Felix Experimental Group (compared to a 2.5 inch candle).

Apport: The apparent physical-to-etheric-to-physical transport of an object under the control of an etheric personality. Usually in the context of a séance, but may occur any time. The object that is thus transported is referred to as an apport Objects differ in size, may be organic or inanimate and appear not to be harmed. In the case of living objects it is speculated that the obstructions are dematerialized to allow the life form to pass unharmed.

In recent theory, it is speculated that other forms of phenomena might be explained as an apport. For instance, credible practitioners have reported examples of transform EVP which include sound known to previously exist in other media. Others have reported examples which are expressed by multiple speakers so that the phrase begins with one voice and ends with another. It is common for an utterance to clearly be a response to a question but with an unusual choice of phrasing.

It might be more efficient to find the required words in the physical and apport them to the sound track, rather than introducing the necessary influence to affect a physical process such as stochastic amplification. See: The Energy Profile of Transform EVP, Materialization and Stochastic Resonance

Appropriate Science: The population of participants in a frontier subject and the history of the subject area determine the ability of the community to document the subject. Every discipline of science has undergone an evolution as it is developed into a system of understanding or an effective tool for learning. In the beginning phase of the evolution of the community, people studying the subject are untrained and often not supported by academic institutions and literature. The measure of how well the discipline of science is applied to the understanding of a subject must necessarily be judged by its evolutionary progress.

A Priori: A conclusion made without examination or factual study. The viewpoint that something is impossible, therefore it cannot be, is an a priori conclusion if the person has made an assumption based on faith or popular wisdom and not on evidence or actual study of the subject. The skeptic community is especially guilty of following an a priori assumption about anything they think is not explicitly supported by mainstream science.Principle-of-Aspectation

Aspectation: The creative process of intention acting on an imagined result produces aspects of reality which are a subset of personality’s personal reality. For instance, when a person imagines driving a new car, the car and its environment are formed out of a subset of how the person imagines reality (personal reality). The little me personality in the car is an aspect of the person as the person imagines him or herself to be.

Repeated aspectation necessarily results in a hierarchy of aspects with an increasingly smaller subset of inherited characteristics relative to the source. Because of this, an aspect may not be the same as the creator of that aspect. For instance, an aspect may be the same as its creator in every way except purpose. A creator must have a reason or purpose for extending an aspect of itself while the resulting aspect must have the purpose of satisfying that reason.

Aspects are thought to exist so long as the creator personality holds them in its attention. It is also important to note that all personalities are speculated to share the Prime Imperative.

In one view of the Implicit Cosmology, once formed, aspects are no longer in agreement of understanding with their source; however, as they gain understanding, they grow closer in agreement with their source, and eventually, are able to merge their understanding (presumably with new insight). Thus, they remain individuals so long as they are not in agreement with their source, and so long as their source maintains attention on their progression with the intention to learn. This is a strict hierarchical model.

A second interpretation is that the aspect returns to its source at the end of transition. In this view, there is less difference between source and aspect and the collective of personalities is the dominant influence of personality’s progression. This is the Collective Model.

From what can be objectively understood by existing phenomena and “reviewed information,” either solutions seems equally possible, as they would have essentially the same effect on a person in this lifetime.

Assumed Knowledge: “Everyone is an expert” is a common complaint of people who have studied transcommunication for many years. As people come into this field and learn a little from fellow enthusiasts, some too quickly decide they are more knowledgeable about things paranormal than others. Even without doing the work of studying existing material, they assume their expertise is greater than anyone who has been in the field for many years.

Assumed knowledge is also prevalent amongst academically trained researchers. Many doctorates tend to automatically disregard anything said by people who are not doctorates even though they may have considerably more practical experience in the subject. In the  academic-layperson partition, the person appears to assume that college training, and in most cases for transcommunication, a degree in psychology sufficiently prepares the person to study any subject without input from subject matter specialists.

Attention Matrix: In the Implicit Cosmology, the Life Field diagram illustrates the functional areas of a life field. Attention functions as a matrix which enables activity. Intention, emotion and curiosity are influences and represent the etheric equivalent of physical energy. Visualization and expression are fundamental processes which operate with these influences.

Throughout the Implicit Cosmology, functional areas exist only so long as, and to the extent attention is on them. For instance, a visualized aspect of reality is created within the matrix of the personality’s attention and ceases to exist, other than as memory, when attention is withdrawn.

Aura:   An energy field or field of radiation that surrounds the human body.  It is said, by those who can see it (clairvoyance), to consist of bands of color. The auric field may be a combination of an electromagnetic byproduct of biological processes and the psi influence associated with the morphic field. See: Biofield

Automatic Writing:  Text produced while in a disassociated state, presumably originating from a discarnate personality. Also known as autoscript, this is probably best thought of as a means of more directly accessing the person’s etheric personality; more lucid awareness of the Perceptual Loop.

A similar ability is automatic drawing, painting and psychic art. These are artistic expression without the control of the conscious self. Sometimes this is done in complete darkness and at great speed. See: Trance

Avatar: In Hinduism, an avatar (from Sanskrit for descent) is a deliberate descent of a deity to Earth. The term can be translated into English as incarnation. A person is an etheric personality entangled with a human body in an avatar relationship.

In the analysis of the relationship between personality and physical body provided in the Comparing Mind-Body Models, the avatar model best accounts for known characteristics. In that, the personality remains associated with the etheric personality via a thread of entanglement, but its point of view is associated with the physical body and it experiences the physical as if it is its physical body (conscious self).

In this view, mind is modeled from the perspective of the etheric personality and the mind of the physical body is seen as an influence that ceases upon transition. Also, worldview for the etheric personality is shared by the avatar, which implies the period of transition out of a lifetime includes a phase in which the instincts, and irrelevant perception of the physical body is in some way evolved out of worldview.

Conceptually, worldview is modeled as the container of data defining personal reality and the arbiter of future understanding (or belief). The extent of this influence is not clear, but is speculated to cause the separation in agreement between the source personality and its aspect (conscious self). Thus contaminated by the avatar’s personality, worldview stands as a measure of progression in so far as the self is able to distinguish between belief and understanding. In this hierarchical model, many lifetimes in different venues for learning may be required to evolve worldview to be in agreement with its source.


Best Practices: Methods and procedures found to be most effective. Best practices are not rules, laws or standards which people are expected to follow. In principle, best practices are to be used as a guide to help a person be aware of that which is known to work and that which has inherent pitfalls (state of the art). Best practices are an excellent means of maintaining actionable aspects of the public memory.

Biofield: Life-based emanation sometimes referred to as human energy field. Life-based emanation sometimes referred to as human energy field. From the physical person perspective (clairvoyance), the biofield may be a combination of electromagnetic emanation and psi field influence perceived as a visible field of energy. The net effect is that the biofield presents useful information about the living organism. See: Aura

Black Box Analysis: Engineers design models for systems they are trying to understand. One way to develop a model is to figuratively put the subject in a black box with the known input and output clearly defined. The trick is then to think of what would have to happen inside of the box in response to the input to produce the output.

Not knowing for sure what is inside the box, engineers must design a set of functional areas within the box that will produce the observed outputs. This is an effective technique for organizations to reverse engineer copyrighted or patented technology in an effort to develop alternative designs.

It is important to note that, when black box modeling is used in a metaphysical cosmology, a plausible explanation may be developed that does not correctly describe reality. As an engineer, I perhaps too easily explain concepts using such hypothetical models. While these explanations are useful to develop the context of this cosmology, it is for you to reserve judgment.


Cabinet: An enclosed space in which mediums condense the psi field that is necessary for physical phenomena. A cabinet may be as simple as a curtain hung across the corner of a room. Some mediums sit in the cabinet while others sit outside of it. Many great mediums who produced physical phenomena found a cabinet unnecessary. See: Contact Field in the Etheric Fields Essay.

Chakras: Also known as energy centers or spiritual centers. According to Hindu and occult teaching, these are usually seven major centers of psychic power associated with ductless glands in the physical body. As with the aura, these centers which are a mixture of color of varying brightness, are seen clairvoyantly and some healers say that they work on the chakras to stimulate a healing of the physical body. See: Biofield and Aura

Channel:  A person who is able to mentally step aside with deep trance to allow an etheric communicator to speak through his or her physical body. The distinction between a medium and a channel is usually made by who is communicating and for what purpose. Generally, a medium communicates messages from discarnate people. A channel is usually thought to be bringing through more profound information from higher beings–entities who have probably not experienced a physical lifetime, and frequently, a personality representing a group of personalities. See: Medium

Citizen Scientist: Ideally, people who study nature are trained to do so by an academically certified organization, but in many cases, the magnitude of a research task may be such that a few academically trained scientists must depend on volunteer assistants for routine tasks such as data collection and field support. These layperson research supporters are sometimes referred to as citizen scientists. In the early days of radio, many ham radio operators could have been referred to as citizen scientists.

There are usually few academically trained scientists in frontier fields, in which case, virtually all of the organized study is conducted by enthusiasts. Hauntings investigation groups are a good example, and of course, the study of Instrumental TransCommunication has historically been shunned by academics, making it necessary for citizen scientists to fill the resulting void.

To qualify as a citizen scientist, a person must individually, or as a team, follow a well-considered protocol which describes the tasks involved in the research. Careful records must be maintained and a final report must be prepared with the intention of public dissemination so as to add to the common knowledge. The report should be submitted for review by informed peers if such a capability is available. The ATransC is available to assist where possible, and under some circumstances, the report may be published in the online Journal. See: Appropriate Science

Clairaudience:   This is a French word that means clear hearing. It is the ability to sense etheric information as sounds rather than impressions or images. Parapsychology refers to this ability as extra-sensory information received as sound. To the person who experiences this, it is as if hearing someone speak; however, not with the physical ear—not an acoustical phenomenon. See the Perception essay.

Claircognizance: Clear knowing; the product of lucidity in which a person is able to more directly sense the psi environment without coloring by the perceptual process.

Clairsentience:  A French word meaning clear sensing. A person senses characteristics of the etheric communicator or circumstance but does not hear or see the information. See the Perception essay.

Clairvoyance:  A French word meaning clear seeing.  It is a mode of perception in which visual images are presented to the conscious mind.  The perception may be of objects, people and/or scenes, and can be from the present, past or future.  The clairvoyant experience may be spontaneous or induced as through meditation, scrying or other methods of divination.

The term clairvoyance has become a catchall term which includes all forms of sensing information in the psi field. probably since this term is so commonly used in Spiritualism and by the New Age culture, parapsychologists have coined the term, “Extra Sensory Perception” or ESP. That tern, seems to be being superseded by psi functioning which applies to any expression of intentionality as an influence on the psi field, but more generally, to any mental expression of intention.

ESP, anomalous information access and anomalous perception are used in parapsychology while psychic and clairvoyance are more commonly used in the general population. See the Perception essay.

Collective: In the Implicit Cosmology, reality is seen as being hierarchical with Source as the top life field and aspects of Source inhabiting sub-realities as imagined by those aspects. All together, the life fields represent a collective that might be called the Source Collective. Each aspect is seen as the source of many sub-aspects so that each aspect would represent a collective. The Principle of Aspectation Diagram illustrates the relationship amongst rounds of aspectation. See the Organizing Principles essay.

Collective Model: Focusing on just the Prime Imperative, Principle of Perceptual Agreement and the concept of worldview, it is easy to argue that, once an aspect is expressed, it must remain independent until it achieves sufficient understanding about the nature of reality to be in perceptual agreement with its source. That is the Hierarchical Model. However, a common theme in transcommunication is the idea of personality as a collective (Collective Model). It is not known if the reference is to a cluster of Little Me aspects of a source personality or a cluster of source personalities which are in agreement. Either way, the effect for conscious self would be essentially the same, except that the consequence of transition with worldview burdened with many prejudices would be less severe in the collective model.

Coloring: A message purported to come from the etheric that has been influenced by the medium’s own thoughts and ideas. Mediums are trained to give what they receive even if they do not understand the message. They are trained to guard against trying to interpret or translate a message to assure that their own thoughts and views are not placed into the message. Nevertheless, it is arguable that all forms of transcommunication are colored in some way because they must traverse the perceptual processes. An exception to this may be trans-influences that involve a contact field without the need for an entangled avatar. This is a gray area of the cosmology.Concept-Related-to-Concepts

Concept: A fundamental idea; a root thoughtform from which systems of thought can be derived. For instance, the concept of something to protect a foot is the fundamental concept for shoes, sandals and such. In etheric studies, the intention of concept is to refer to the underlying thoughtforms that have at their core a kernel of information specific to one subject, and to which related elements of information are attracted. For instance, the concept of something to protect a foot is the fundamental concept for shoes, sandals and such. Protection for feet is the core concept and shoe and sandal are related concepts. In the context of a thoughtform, related concepts are attracted to the core concept, but if the perspective is changed, then it is possible that shoe might become the core concept while Protection for feet and sandal would be attracted elements.

The Mapping Concepts diagram above  illustrates this. The diagram shows a possible relationship amongst four of the listed concepts. The large blue number represents a concept on the list and the smaller numbers in a cluster around it represents the other concepts. In parenthesis is the relative importance of the related concept. Note that Concept one is true whether or not there is an avatar relationship.

As fundamental elements of thought, concepts might be considered a building block of reality, but more importantly, concepts are the building block of understanding. Comprehension of concepts is fundamental to understanding the nature of reality.

Conceptual: Reality is experienced in a conceptual form, as opposed to an objective one. Here conceptual meaning nonphysical; a thought. Consider how a person experiences a physical block of wood for instance. Following the Implicit Cosmology model, information about the object is physically sensed and transformed via the brain-mind interface into a form that can be processed in the Perceptual Loop. There, it is compared to prior experience and brought to the person’s conscious attention via visualization of the block based on results of the perceptual process. In a very practical way, it is not the block of wood that is experienced, but what the person thinks of that block of wood.

In most of the current models depending on quantum principles, the block of wood does not even exist until the wave function is collapsed by observation. This is the idea that the physical is actually a set of probabilities and does not assume an objective nature until it is observed. The Implicit Cosmology does not exclude the possibility of a quantum mechanical explanation for any aspect of reality. If the quantum model is correct, then it would be correct to say that the Perceptual Loop affects the collapse of possible states into one that is experienced as a block of wood.

Beginning with the physical sensing of the block of wood, all else is conceptual, meaning it is perception of the object as it is in thoughtform. This means that the real and natural form of reality is conceptual and what we call objective is actually the product of our Creative Process.  See the Perception and Creative Process Essays.

Consciousness: A physical person is self-aware and that awareness is described as consciousness. Thinking of a person in terms a physical body temporarily associated with an etheric personality, the personality is thought to be always self-aware; however the awake person may not be aware of the same scope of reality as is that person’s personality. If talking about the physical person, consciousness is how awake and alert the person is. See: lucidity in the Trans-Survival Hypothesis Essay. See: lucidity

Consciousness is defined by worldview which is, in turn, modified by the point of view of consciousness. The aspect of reality a personality is able to inhabit is determined by the nature of that person’s worldview, which defines the person’s perception. The idea that all things are consciousness is a view or model used to describe the nature of reality. ATransC modifies the model by saying that it is the perceptual of the personality that should be considered in describing a model for reality.

Contact Field: The concept is that the rapport of mutual cooperation builds the kind of etheric field/physical energy necessary for etheric to physical influences. This may also be a type of thoughtform developed by long-time human occupancy of a place and/or the expression of extreme emotion and which has become entangled with the place due to habit. Such a thought form may support similar trans-etheric influences as otherwise required by a personality-avatar relationship. See the Contact Field in the Etheric Fields Essay.

Contact Healing: Physical contact is made between the sitter and the healer. Also called laying on of hands or spiritual healing. Absent, distant and non-contact healing is healing done without contact and/or at a distance. See: Healing Intention

Control: The personality in charge of a medium or the process of a séance proceeding. The control directs the operation of the communication with the medium who is the instrument of the communication or physical phenomena.

Corollary: A proposition that follows with little or no proof required from one already proven.


The hierarchical cosmology as described in the Hermetic Qabalah (as if a layer cake) works in conversation as a means of indicating here and relatively not here as one moves into other aspects of reality.

Cosmology: A model representing the relationship of a set of concepts. In Etheric Studies, the cosmology relating such concepts as personality, the physical versus the greater aspects of reality, transition and transcommunication are studied as metaphysics which is the conceptual aspect of the etheric studies. Etheric Studies is also concerned with objective processes and principles related to the physical part of trans-etheric influences. See The Cosmology of Imaginary Space Essay.


Letting the Mandelbrot Set represent a model for imaginary space (the etheric), “movement” would be accomplished by changing initial conditions (point of view) for each thought. Black areas in the plot above are fractals representing stable space (loci of creation?)

Cross-Correspondence: One or more forms of phenomena are experienced and found to produce information that agrees. For instance, a medium might say that the loved one is standing behind a person, and at the same time, a photograph of the person contains a disturbance that seems to be the shape of a person.

Cross-Reference: Different mediums simultaneously receive the same message with a request to forward the message to the same person.

Crystal Gazing or Scrying: A form of divination done by gazing at a surface that appears to have great depth such as a crystal ball, pool of water or mirror. After a time of cloudiness, pictures and scenes are said to appear. This is the form of divination said to have been used at the time of the Greek Oracles and also by Nostradamus.  See Divination.


Death-Bed Visions: In a typical death-bed visions a person near the moment of transition reports seeing the appearance of deceased loved ones and relatives. The dying brain explanation does not explain why the person reports seeing only people on the other side and not just anyone from memory. There have been instances in which the person reported seeing a friend who had recently transitioned without the person or person’s family knowing of the transition.

Dematerialization:  The disappearance of matter or a materialized form.  Parts of the medium’s body have been recorded as temporarily disappearing during séances in which physical phenomena has taken place.(c)felix2010-seance_room

Development Circle: A group of people working together over an extended period of time to develop their individual mediumistic abilities and/or to establish objective contact with cooperating personalities. The circle may be formatted as a class which including meditation and learning how to work with psi and communicate across the veil. This is an excellent format for developing mediumship and healing intention, as many techniques can be used to familiarize the student with working with psi.

In some cases, the circle works in total darkness with the intention of using  ectoplasm or psi for materialization (ideoplastic structures). A classroom circle may meet for only a few months, but one seeking trans-etheric phenomena in the séance room may sit for many years before establishing contact. This is one reason why there are so few materialization mediums still practicing today.

Differentiation:  Please see Aspectation

Direct Drawing, painting and Writing:  This is accomplished without the use of the hand of the medium or any human contact with the materials used. The materials combine directly to produce the artistic result.  The Bangs sisters, David Duguid and Mrs. E. J French are all mediums known for this phenomenon.

Discarnate:  A person who has transitioned out of a physical lifetime. A personality that is not associated with a physical body.

Divination:  Discovery of things that are hidden using various practices such as dowsing, astrology, numerology, palmistry, crystal gazing and various cards used for divination such as the Tarot. This is a form of psi functioning as information acquisition using a device or object for attention entrainment.

Differentiation: Please see the Principle of Aspectation in the Organizing Principles essay.

Direct Drawing, Painting and Writing: This is accomplished without human contact with the materials used. The materials combine directly to produce the artistic result.

Direct Voice: A voice heard in space without any visible source. The voice often emanates from a trumpet, which serves as a condenser and amplifier for the voice. But with a sufficiently strong contact field, the voice can be heard from any part of the room. The theory of how this is done is that ectoplasm is withdrawn from the medium’s or sitter’s body to produce a larynx or artificial voice box. The voices may be human sounding or the sounds of animals.

Direct voice phenomena have been reported outside of the séance room as well. It is one of the possible explanations for EVP occurring on more than one recorder even though it was known that no one was speaking at the time. In such a case, the voice should be heard by observers.

Discarnate: A person who has transitioned out of a physical lifetime. A personality that is not associated with a physical body.

Discernment: Believe what you wish but understand the implications of what you believe. While worldview informs perception and expression, the conscious intention to align perception and expression with the actual nature of reality is discernment. Suspended judgment allows personality to consider experiences without incorporating them into worldview.

Discernment is possibly the most important quality one can intentionally cultivate. Those who have consciously stepped on a path toward understanding make little progress until they have learned to experience life without the need to explain or rationalize experience. Understanding is not a list of this is true and that is not. It is the comprehension that this is related to that in some way.

Divination: Discovery of things that are hidden using various practices such as dowsing, astrology, numerology, palmistry, crystal gazing and various cards used for divination such as the Tarot. This is a form of psi functioning as information acquisition using a device or object for attention entrainment.

Doorkeeper: See Control

Dowsing: Using a rod, twig or pendulum to discover information such as find water or lost articles. Dowsing is often used as a means to help focus the mind for clairvoyance.


Earthbound Entity: A term often used to describe entities believed to have remained perceptually close to the physical aspect of reality because of habits, attachments or ignorance of their true state. Earthbound spirits are often held responsible for haunting activity. Rescue circles seek to assist such personalities move on by completing their transition.

As directors of the ATransC, we have not found support for this concept and advise that it is inappropriate to think discarnate personalities require rescue. The concept of Perceptual agreement appears to assure that a personality will be attracted to the aspect of reality with which it is in most agreement. There is support for the idea that a personality might perceptually associate with the physical aspect of reality, but this is thought to be a purposeful act and not that of an involuntarily stuck personality. We wonder how many loved ones come to say hello have been rejected by a supposed clearing of the house.



A column of ectoplasm in front of medium in the Felix Experimental Group circle.

Ectoplasm: Typically a white substance that is sometimes produced by the medium during séances. It is usually produced via the mouth but reportedly might come from any orifice. In red light, we have witnessed the FEG medium produce it in copious amounts, often pulling the white substance from his mouth with both hands.

It is understandable that it is often claimed by skeptics to be just cloth the medium had put in his mouth before the séance. The material does tend to hold shape as cloth does, but it never smells of bile or any other bodily order that would necessarily been associated with storing it in the body.

Once in good red light, the medium walked about the séance room letting each sitter feel a handful of ectoplasm by way of the medium touching the person’s head with it. It was very wet, and water could be seen dripping from it, even though other times it only had a slight white, self-luminous quality and left no water mark where it was on the unpainted plywood floor.

The ectoplasm is produced as a tool. It can become semi-rigid and move on its own so as to lift a spirit light or trumpet to swing about the room. That is usually in darkness, but we have seen a hand rise from a pile of the substance as if it was a white glove with no hand in it. We could see it wave about as if greeting the sitters; this, without the attention or attendant movement of the medium.

Ectoplasm is able to assume the shape of a person, even to the extent of flesh tones. We have seen cameo-like faces embedded in it, and sometimes those have been recognized as loved ones. I have seen the face of Hans Bender, the medium’s etheric control.

Electronic Voice Phenomena or EVP:  EVP are anomalous, intelligible speech produced in electronic devices. They may be heard as a real-time output but are more generally heard on review of a subsequent recording. No currently understood physical processes account for the existence of EVP. The ATransC uses a three-tier scale for classifying how well an EVP example can is expected to be heard and understood by a listener:

Class A: Can be heard and understood over a speaker by most people
Class B: Can be heard over a speaker, but not everyone will agree as to what is said
Class C: Requires using a headphones to make out and is difficult to understand

Class B or C voices may have one or two clearly understood words. Loud does not equal Class A. A distinction can be made between Types of phenomena so that a Type 1 is transformed physical media and the paranormal example is not always present while a Type 2 example is always present and is often as a persistent artifact of the technology or material. See: the Classification web page

EVP are spoken of in the plural because there are a number of forms. For instance, Transform EVP is the most common form in which the voices are formed out of available audio-frequency background sound either in the environment or produced in the recorder. Opportunistic EVP is voice formed by selection of available bits of sound as seen with EVPmaker. A third form is the spontaneous messages found in telephones and answering machine. These three forms are thought to depend on very different physical processes. EVP are considered a subset of Instrumental TransCommunication (ITC).

Energy Healing: See: Healing Intention

Entangled: The concept of entanglement is used to indicate the binding rapport between an etheric personality and its avatar (physical body) during a lifetime. The nature of this connection is not clear but the most obvious indication of its nature is the difficulty a person has in disassociating from the body. The sense of being the body is often so complete that,  for some people, the possibility of mind separate from body is unthinkable. Entanglement is binding, because once established, the resulting rapport is a living link of attention that is maintained by personality’s intention to gain understanding.

Entanglement is thought to be a common characteristic of nested formative fields. In this concept, the top organizing field of an organism is entangled with the related subfields composing the organism.

It is interesting to speculate that many years ago a holy man might have been given the message from his etheric teachers that his Soul was connected to his body by way of his Soul’s attention on his body. Sometime in our history, that or a similar revelation is likely the source our current lore about a silver cord connecting our astral body to our physical one. See the Personality Essay.

Etheric: Etheric is an old term referring to heaven. That aspect of the reality field that is not physical; nonphysical; everything that is not physical. The physical aspect of reality is differentiated etheric. The term has been traditionally used to describe the subtle, underlying media supporting reality. The etheric is the matrix of reality. As a generic term for the conceptual space of reality, the Etheric concept will probably be subdivided as more is understood about the greater reality. See the Etheric Fields Essay

Etheric Communicator: All trans-etheric influences are thought to be under the intelligent and mindful direction of a personality. In the Trans-survival Hypothesis, personality is native to the etheric, and is seen as a communicator. The personality initiating the influence may be that of a physical person or that of a discarnate person.

Etheric Energy: The concept of etheric energy has been superseded by fields. See Etheric Fields below

Etheric Field: Conceptually, a field represents a set of elements with common characteristics which are bound together by a common influence. Etheric fields are regions of reality that can be modeled as a node or nexus (attractor) associated with a set of related elements. It is useful to model reality as a single etheric field (reality field) expressed by a first cause or Source. In this view, the reality field is the top etheric field, from which all other fields have been  derived via differentiation. In this way, the reality field has been differentiated as a hierarchy of nested etheric fields.

An etheric field represents conceptual elements of reality such as memory, visualizations, expressions and attention on a possible outcome (intention). A life field is a top etheric field (top fractal or organizing field) in an entangled hierarchy of organizing fields.

As considered here, an organizing field can be compared with morphic field; however, organizing field is used here as a more general term to avoid the assumption of organic morphogenesis. A formative field can be seen as the top life fractal.

The concept of etheric fields includes formative fields, morphic fields, thoughtforms and ideoplastic structures. The primary difference is in the scope of how this field theory is applied. They may be thought of as psi fields which are a zone of influence in the etheric, for instance mind as a field or thoughts as expression of mind. See: Psi and the Etheric Fields Essay

Etheric Studies: The study of all things etheric. This is not an individual science, such as biology or physics. It is a field of study concerned with the nature of the etheric aspects of reality. By comparison, physics and biology are sciences concerned with the physical aspect of reality and would be part of “Physical Studies.” Etheric studies is intended to complement physical science, as it is thought that discoveries in etheric studies will often extend the definition of physical principles while occasionally requiring the definition of new principles.

Experimental Model:  A hypothesis; the unifying illustration of a system of thought; in traditional philosophy, a cosmology. Cosmologies are used to illustrate how the various concepts or beliefs integrate as a whole. In traditional metaphysical cosmologies, the typical cosmology is designed like a layer cake in which the physical is at or near the bottom and heaven is at the top. Virtually every metaphysical cosmology is based on a system of belief usually derived from an evolved philosophy or from revealed knowledge.

Experiencer: A person who witnesses or experiences phenomena. There is a group of common experiences reported by people in the physical such as knowledge of coming events, encounters with apparitions and especially meaningful, lucid dreams. There appears to be a set of common experiences people will have during and after transition including self-judgment, a place of recuperation and a process of assessment. And of course, there is what might be described as a consensus suite of experiences based on given information brought via mediumship. These include various cosmologies with common themes and revelations about right conduct. The ATransC uses conceptual and experiential descriptions in a cosmology which is based the Trans-survival Hypothesis.


Field: In physics, a field is a space-time region of influence that has a value for each point that is generally related to potential between limits influencing its formation. For instance, a magnet has a field of influence around its poles. Conceptually, a field represents a set of elements with common characteristics and with each element having a different value. See the Etheric Fields Essay and the Etheric Field entry here.

First Sight Theory: First Sight theory is a term used by James Carpenter.

Frontier Subject: Any field of study that has not been embraced by mainstream society, especially mainstream science. A frontier subject may appear to be pure fantasy or it may have some supporting evidence. A frontier subject is one that has not benefited from having a well-trained and well-funded community vet the subject for reasonableness and supporting evidence.


Gestalt: A system or set of elements that must be taken as a whole; something that is understood as a whole, such as a gestalt realization resulting in sudden overall comprehension. The idea is that information in the etheric is managed as concepts which are apparently conveyed by gestalt bundles of related concepts. Our minds, which are oriented toward a building-block perspective of reality, then converts this thought ball into understanding based on our worldview.

An interesting explanation for how practitioners and listeners might find EVP where there are none is seen in the Gestalt Laws of Perceptual Organization, which includes (

The Law of Proximity: Stimulus elements that are closed together tend to be perceived as a group

The Law of Similarity: Similar stimuli tend to be grouped, this tendency can even dominate grouping due to proximity

The Law of Closure: Stimuli tend to be grouped into complete figures

The Law of Good Continuation: Stimuli tend to be grouped as to minimize change or discontinuity

The Law of Symmetry: Regions bound by symmetrical boarders tend to be perceived as coherent figures

The Law Simplicity: Ambiguous stimuli tend to be resolved in favor of the simplest

Ghost: Any visitation from a discarnate personality. The presence of the personality might be sensed as a feeling or as the result of some psychokinetic influence such as lights turning on and off. In extreme cases, the personality manifests as an apparition which may be seen by more than one person and even photographed. It is the apparition one usually thinks of as a ghost.

Ghosts are thought to be earthbound personalities. In ghost hunting lore, a personality is said to be earthbound or stuck because it has unfinished business, does not know it is dead or has some emotional tie to a place or person. Ghost recue is a common practice in which a person attempts to convince the personality to move one.

There is speculation that some apparitions are really just the residual body consciousness or body image behaving as a recorder ghost by repeating more or less the same habitual actions. See the Personality Essay.

Glossolalia:  Speaking in a language unknown to the medium or person doing the speaking.

God: In the Implicit Cosmology, God, Source, Infinite Intelligence, First Cause and Prime Creator are terms referring to an intelligence which is considered the source of all of reality as the top life field which includes an intelligent core and the top etheric field as the reality field. Everything is formed in, and inherits purpose and organizing principles from the top life field. This cosmology does not speculate about the source of this creator entity, and out of necessity, addresses reality as a first order aspect of the source. In that sense, reality is in the mind of the source.

Source is thought to be curious about itself. To satisfy this curiosity, so the cosmology goes, it has expressed (created) aspects of itself to experience the reality filed and return an understanding of its nature. All else exists as aspects of this first cause as a result of this urge to understand.

It is important to point out that this source should not be considered a person, just as there is no reason to think of it as having any interest in individual aspects of itself. In no way are we saying that this God is a father figure or an entity that judges individuals. It is more likely a coherent, sentient field of attention.  See Source

Guide:   A continual, benevolent, protective influence which acts in a protective and or instructive capacity. Guides are said to be advanced entities who voluntarily return with a purpose in mind. Some guides say that they are only the mediums for even higher or more advanced entities. They may also be loved ones who remain perceptually close to help loved ones still in the physical.

There is increasing evidence that personalities are associated in groups of cooperating or related personalities. In one system of thought, personalities as a collective share a creator personality that has created aspects of itself to acquire specific understanding through experience in the physical. These aspects (use) must achieve that level of understanding before returning to the creator aspect. Thus, related personalities are thought to assist one another however possible to advance their group consciousness. This, of course is still a theory. See the Implicit Cosmology Essay for further reading.


Haunting: Paranormal disturbances usually attributed to the personality of a discarnate person. Various phenomena are reported as haunting events including moving objects, strange noises, lights, cold spots, unpleasant smells and the appearance of ghostly figures. See Trans-etheric Influence

Hauntings Investigation: An organized study using instruments designed to sense the energetic environment of the space, including temperature, magnetism, broadcast electromagnetic radiation, light and sound. Often a mental medium or psychic will participate. Gathered data is compared with historical records and a report is made intended to show whether or not trans-etheric influences have been detected, and if so, how they relate to the known history of the location. This is known as ghost hunting when such investigations are more in the form of a club outing with no intention of publishing a paper.

Healing Intention: When a person thinks of another person, a link of influence is established between the two. In the context of the Implicit Cosmology, this is referred to as rapport. The nature of this rapport (the link) is determined by the person’s attention, visualization and intention (the source). When intention is focused on the wellbeing of the other person, the resulting expression of intended order is seen as a healing influence.

The various healing modalities are modeled as healing intention, but with unique points of view as to how healing is expected to occur. Some modalities are more about setting expectations and conditioning the worldview to accept healing. Others depend on a conditioned expectation that there will be some tactile/sensed effect such as a difference in heat, stiffness or vitality, depending on the system.

Healing intention is thought to apply more to the avatar body mind (body image) but certainly has the potential of influencing the etheric personality.

Hierarchical Model: In one view of the Implicit Cosmology, once formed, aspects are no longer in agreement of understanding with their source; however, as they gain understanding, they grow closer in agreement with their source, and eventually, are able to merge their understanding (presumably with new insight). Thus, they remain individuals so long as they are not in agreement with their source, and so long as their source maintains attention on their progression with the intention to learn. This is a strict hierarchical view. See Collective Model

Home Circle:  A group of friends who meet on a regular basis usually in a person’s home to develop their mediumistic abilities. Some circles sit for specific purposes such as absent healing, meditation, psychic development, mediumship and physical phenomena.

Hyperlucidity: A short-term change in behavior marked by the tendency to find phenomena everywhere despite considerable testimony to the contrary by peers. The concept comes from occasional reports of odd behavior exhibited by some people when they visit an emotionally charged place (Paris syndrome, Jerusalem syndrome) or experience great beauty (Stendhal syndrome). The effect is the experiencer’s mistaken belief in experiencing paranormal phenomena such as reporting voices in recordings when there are none, seeing features in otherwise featureless visual media and misattributing thoughts as transcommunication.

See: Lucidity, Incredulity blindnessPareidolia and Hyperlucidity (in Perception Essay)

Hypothesis:  An experimental model; a tentative explanation of how the knowledge base might be unified as a systematic understanding of an aspect of reality. A hypothesis is a statement that is assumed to be true for the sake of discussion, the validity of which is dependent on verification of predictions resulting from those assumptions.

As an example, the Trans-survival Hypothesis is designed to unify current understanding of personality, survival of personality after transition and the nature of reality in which personality continues after transition. It is not proposed as a truth, but is a speculation presented as a unified view of current understanding (specifically Tom Butler’s understanding).

Certain predictions about reality and survival can be made based on the hypothesis. The results of research designed to test those predictions are used to modify the hypothesis. Thus, a hypothesis is expected to be evolved to make it a more accurate model of reality.


Ideoplastic: The Ideo- prefix means idea or image. Ideoplastic is used here to mean the nature of objects formed in the creative process as mind to object expression. Ideoplasy means the process of formation. The term was coined by Max Vorworm, but is used here in the sense intended by the German parapsychology icon Dr. Freiherr von Schrenck-Notzing as: Everything that can be remembered, also things the person has read or observed or is interested in, all these memories can find a materializing reflection in the influence field [of the séance room]. (Among others: Phenomena of Materialization, Munich 1923) See the Creative Process Essay.

Imagined Reality: (Imaginary Space) A way of looking at differentiation is how a person imagines being in a situation: The person might see a sports car and momentarily imagine owning and driving the car. The person would see the car in a familiar circumstance, perhaps driving to work. That subset of the person’s personal reality would be populated with familiar people and an imagined version of the person (Little Me) would be driving the car. Such visualization has no value if the person does not allow the imagined scene to play itself out without external influence, so while the person would observe the scene, Little Me would have a degree of self-determination and an urge to gain understanding about the experience.

In the end, the person’s Little Me would return a degree of understanding about owning the car, allowing the person to learn something it had not known. The imagined sub-reality would cease to exist as the person withdraws attention; however, it would indefinitely continue to exist in the person’s memory and Little Me would remain an aspect of the person’s personality, likely resurrected from time to time for other experiences.

Consider the person’s personal reality a subset of the reality it exists in, which is the greater reality. Personal reality is what the person thinks reality is and that information is stored in his worldview. The greater reality, personal reality and sub-reality of this scenario can be considered nested realities or venues for learning. The person and Little Me are seen as part of a hierarchy of personalities, and so, the concept holds that reality exists as a hierarchy of personalities extending from Source to Little Me with an unknown number of differentiated personalities between.

Inattentional Blindness: is the failure to notice a fully visible, but unexpected object because attention was engaged on another task, event or object. (Scholarpedia)

Incredulity Blindness: A category of inattention agnosia, in which an audio or visual example of a phenomenon is not experienced because it is so foreign to a person’s worldview. There are at least two forms of the experimenter effect. One is the difference in experimental results collected by believers and skeptics. The second is due to the difference in reported results between a believer and a skeptic.

There is some evidence of incredulity blindness (incredulity deafness?) shown by results of online listening trials. In Trial 1, 34 participants indicating a belief in EVP correctly identified an average of 40.9% of the words in five EVP examples. 31 participants indicating a skeptical view correctly identified 28% of the words and 5 participants who indicated that they were both skeptical and academically trained correctly identified an average of 20% of the words.

Induced After Death Communication: The Guggenheims maintain After Death Communications (ADC) are spontaneous, which is why Allan Botkin refers to his EMDR induced ADCs as induced or IADCTM. Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) is a therapeutic technique in which the practitioner guides a client to move his or her eyes back and forth while dwelling on an emotional memory. This is over simplification. In practice, the technique helps remove the emotional charge of a memory. Based on his work with war veterans, Botkin developed a technique in which clients have impressively vivid communication with transitioned loved ones, thus the Induced part of ADC.

Note that Botkin has protected IADC with a trademark for his therapeutic technique, meaning that he owns use of the term. We recommend that Transcommunication be used for our purposes. Also see Guided Afterlife Connections and Self-guided Afterlife Connections

Infinite Intelligence: In Spiritualism, Source, Prime Creator, First Cause, God, whatever you think of when you think of the influence that started reality in the first place, is known as Infinite Intelligence.  Yes, it is correct to say that Infinite Intelligence is God.  Spiritualists do believe in God.  But there are a few important differences in the way Spiritualists understand God. Most importantly, Infinite Intelligence is not a father figure that offers rewards and punishment to his children. See: Source

Informed: Informed is used here to mean based on or influenced by. Perception is informed by worldview. Informed visualization is visualization based on what is known about the objective. In fact, all visualization is informed by the past and current understanding. See: The Hypothesis of Formative Causation

Instrumental TransCommunication (ITC):  Communication across the veil with the aid of technology. Trans-etheric influence is a more global term meaning communication between the physical and the greater reality with or without devices. ITC occurs via technology as images, voices and text messages initiated by communicating personalities in the etheric. See: Transcommunication, Electronic Voice Phenomena and Video ITC

Intended Order: This is one of the foundation concepts of the Trans-Survival Hypothesis. A common factor in ITC is the transformation of broad-spectrum, chaotic energy into intelligently intended features such as the voice in EVP and faces in visual ITC. Current research is showing that output of random event generators increase in order when in the presence of strongly expressed intention. There is evidence in precipitation phenomena, such as spirit art, that the precipitation material undergoes a transformation from chaotic energy to intended order as raw material is brought via the etheric (apported) and organized as informed by the imagined image. This research suggests that the basic element of the creative process is the emergence of intended order.  See Intended Order in the Creative Process essay.

Intention Field: Expression of intention (intended outcome) is generally thought of as a thoughtform which acts as a formative influence for physical action (motion, voice), conscious thought or an Ideoplastic structure. Intention fields persist as long as the personality maintains attention on the intended outcome. This is a form of etheric field. See Intention Field in the Creative Process essay.

Interested Observer: A person is considered an interested observer or witness if the person is present for an experimental session, knows about it or in some way has attention on the session. In the study of trans-etheric influences, it is not necessary for the person to be physically involved to have an influence on the process. At this time, there is no way to shield from attention, even if it is only subconscious.




Karma:  A principle in Theosophy, Buddhism and Hinduism that states that we are the cause of our present conditions. These conditions are said to be governed by the Law of Action which holds that, for every action there is a reaction with our deeds, acts and attitudes creating our future and making one ultimately responsible for oneself. This concept is probably more correctly thought of as understanding of the operation of reality, with bad karma being imperfect understanding.

Knowing: The current best practice for measuring accuracy of understanding is an iterative test. That is, if something is presumably understood, but that understanding changes with the next relevant experience, then it must be only belief. If, however, understand stands up to repeated tests, then a degree of confidence about its correctness can be assumed. Here, that is referred to as “knowing.” Knowing must always be tempered with the certainty that the nature of reality is evolving and what is known today may be different tomorrow. Thus is the nature of living systems.


Levitation: The movement of a person or object, usually up or down. Not always paranormal, but as paranormal phenomena, levitation is presumably caused by the expression of intention as psychokinesis (or the older term, telekinesis). Levitation is a commonly observed phenomenon in physical mediumship, especially during séances. See: Psychokinesis

Life: From the physical perspective, predominately considered to be a characteristic of humans, plants and animals. In the Implicit Cosmology, physical matter is modeled as an expression of life. See: Life Field (below)

Life Field: In the Implicit Cosmology, life is considered the fundamental component of reality. If modeled as a fractal, then Source is the top fractal. Fractals occur as a top  fractal, subsequent to which is a hierarchy of fractals of diminishing scale.

A fractal is structure, shape or form that is expressed in a similar way at all scales. In the Sierpinski triangle for instance (right), which is formed by connecting the midpoints of each side of a triangle to form three triangles inside the first, and repeating that as scale allows. The triangle is a fractal which is repeated at many different scales. The veining of a river drainage system or branching of plants can also be seen as fractal patterns. See the Life Field essay.

Lucidity: The concept of consciousness has little meaning if talking about the person as an etheric personality. A more appropriate term is lucidity in the sense of a clear and open channel of awareness between the I think I am this (conscious self) and the true I am this intelligent core (personality).

It is becoming increasingly evident that a clear channel of communication between physical consciousness and the etheric personality is a factor for management of psi information. For instance, if people are informed about their environment on an unconscious level by way of psi sensing, then lucidity would be a measure of how aware the person is of that connection. See: Hyperlucidity

Luminous Phenomena:  These frequently occur in association with physical mediumship; however, luminous discharges have been reported during healing intention sessions, as well. A technique for detecting the influence of intentionality at a distance is to monitor luminosity of cucumbers.


Materialization:  In metaphysics, materialization is generally the appearance of any formation of physical material, apparently out of thin air. It is considered one of the phenomena of physical mediumship, and the objects are traditionally thought to originate first as ectoplasm which then takes the shape of the materialized object. Such objects usually retain their physical shape for a short period of time. There might be many different objects and/or discarnate people materialized during a physical séance but afterwards, there will be no remaining evidence that they were present.

Materialization might be in the form of precipitation,, in which physical material acts as the raw stuff acted on by intention to produce an image or object. In this case, the object may be relatively permanent. Lore has it that such precipitated forms sometimes require a period of time; say twenty-four hours, to stabilize before becoming permanent.

An object might be apported to the present location, in which case, it would presumably have existed elsewhere in the physical, but then dematerialized, moved in some way in the etheric and then materialized in the present location. An apported object is thought to be a permanent form.

In the Implicit Cosmology, ectoplasm is considered just another form of materialization, and the focus is on expression of the Creative Process and intended order. In the cosmology, all objects of reality are modeled as ideoplastic structures.

Matrixing: This is a term that has apparently been coined by one of the ghost hunting TV programs. It is used instead of the more commonly accepted term, pareidolia, to indicate that a person is mistaking an ordinary object or stimulus as paranormal because the person is not seeing it as it really is. In the interest of maintaining communication with people outside of the hauntings investigation community, pareidolia is the recommended term. See Pareidolia


Film canister passing through the glass wall of an aquarium used as a “mini-lab.” Picture is from Real Communication? Report on a SORRAT Letter-Writing Experiment, by taken by I. Grattan-Guinness)

Matter Through Matter:  This phenomenon has been produced on many occasions with a variety of items being removed or introduced into sealed jars and locked containers.  Clothing that has been stitched on has been removed from mediums.  Rings of wood, leather, iron and other matter have been linked together.  Items have been reported passing through tables and in and out of closed séance rooms.  See: apport

Medium: A person who is able to sense etheric personalities and convey information from them to people in the physical. The task of a medium is to be as clear and open a channel as possible to avoid coloring the message. This is usually accomplished by the medium entering into trance. Inspirational speaking, for instance, is usually accomplished while the person is in a light trance. A medium giving a spirit greeting in a Spiritualist church service and a mental medium giving a full reading is also usually in a light trance. A physical medium producing materialization phenomena is thought to be in a more or less complete or deep trance in which the medium’s personality has stepped aside so that the personality of the communicating personality may directly communicate using the medium’s physical body. See the Mediumship Essay.

Mediumship: Functioning as a medium. Mediumship may be in the form of a conscious person relaying information or enabling the relay of information as is seen with mental mediumship and inspired action such as art, design, writing and speaking. It may be in the form of deep trance mediumship in which the personality of the person is thought to step aside so that an etheric communicator may use the body. It may also be in the form of the mediumship of the recorder (or other device) in which the person is generally unaware of the mediumistic act.

There is growing evidence that people may be functional mediums, meaning that they might be in a disassociated mental state (trance), but appear completely normal and able to function, say at work or when performing routine tasks. In this concept, for at least some mental tasks, the person has learned to automatically access information that would normally only be available via a deep and usually debilitating trance. See the Mediumship Essay.

Metaphysics: In philosophy, the examination of the nature of reality, including the relationship between personality and the greater reality. Models used to describe a set of metaphysical concepts are referred to as a cosmology. In Etheric Studies, metaphysics is the study of an ordered set of concepts which are described in a cosmology.Life-Field-Complex

Mind: The Implicit Cosmology is a model that has been developed around functional areas of a person as a nonphysical personality entangled with a human being in an avatar relationship. In this context, mind is the collection of functional areas described in the Life Field Complex diagram above.

The term, consciousness is used as a continuum from fully consciousness awareness to unconscious so that conscious self represents the physical point of view of a personality that is entangled with a human in an avatar relationship.

The mental processes associated with perception are modeled in the Basic Functional Areas of Perception Diagram. In that, the rules of perception are thought to agree with the proposed corollaries in First Sight Theory.

A person in light trance might be fully aware but a person in deep trance would be unconscious. Trance-like states presumably allow the person greater awareness along the continuum between conscious and unconscious.  In deep trance, it is presumed that the person is allowing another personality access to the body for the purpose of communication. A sleeping person is considered unconscious; however, if the person has achieved some degree of lucidity, he or she may have greater access to normally unconscious processes.

Mind Tensor: In the context of etheric space, the term is used to signify how a life-field navigates amongst etheric fields. An analog for this is discussed in the Cosmology of Imaginary Space Essay. The Perceptual Loop is thought to be incapable of processing information that is very different that which is in worldview. This is the foundation of the Principle of Perceptual Agreement.

This term is probably not in the science literature. According to the Random House Kernerman Webster’s College Dictionary. (2010), a tensor is a mathematical entity with components that change in a particular way in a transformation from one coordinate system to another. Tensors are becoming an important tool in the study of large-scale quantum fields.

Model: In the context of Etheric Studies, a theoretical set of functional areas defined to produce the effect proposed by a hypothesis. As in black box analysis, the model need not be factually correct, but it must functionally produce the intended results. In terms of the etheric, a model is a thought exercise.

Modes of Transcommunication: There are two fundamental forms of transcommunication. A person can initiate communication across the veil via an expression of intention (focus on  or instrumentally as in EVP. This form of transcommunication is considered induced. When communication is induced via the expression of intention and without the use of devices, it is considered direct. When instruments are used such as for EVP, the communication is considered to be instrumental.

For most people, communication across the veil is spontaneous, in that the etheric communicator might approach the person or there might be contact with a thoughtform as a result of an environmental influence that stimulates the creative process. Spontaneous transcommunication can be either direct as in mental impressions or instrumental as in unexpected voices in recording media.

Morphic Field: (From Sheldrake) A field within and around a morphic unit which organizes its characteristic structure and pattern of activity. Morphic fields underlie the form and behavior of holons or morphic units at all levels of complexity. The term morphic field includes morphogenetic, behavioral, social, cultural, and mental fields. Morphic fields are shaped and stabilized by morphic resonance from previous similar morphic units, which were under the influence of fields of the same kind. They consequently contain a kind of cumulative memory and tend to become increasingly habitual. See the Etheric Fields Essay and Rupert Sheldrake.

Morphic Resonance: (From Sheldrake) The influence of previous structures of activity on subsequent similar structures of activity organized by morphic fields. Through morphic resonance, formative causal influences pass through or across both space and time, and these influences are assumed not to fall off with distance in space or time, but they come only from the past. The greater the degree of similarity, the greater is the influence of morphic resonance. In general, morphic units closely resemble themselves in the past and are subject to self-resonance from their own past states. See the Etheric Fields essay and Rupert Sheldrake.

Morphogenetic Field: See Morphic Fields (above)


Natural Law:  Natural Law is defined as an “ascertained working sequence or constant order among the phenomena of nature.”(NSAC Spiritualism) In concept, Natural Laws include all of the principles governing the operation of reality. They are thought to be everywhere the same. Understanding the principles of Natural Law permits the person to live in accordance with the operation of reality, which is thought to be the objective of living. The degree to which a person understands and is able to live in accordance with the principles is a measure of the person’s progression which is the degree to which a person understands the true nature of reality.

There is little agreement about the principles of Natural Law. For instance, from a metaphysical view, organizing principles are described in fundamental concepts such as differentiation and perceptual agreement. In sociological views, the Golden Rule (do unto others…) and like attracts like are usually included in lists of Natural Law. There is also considerable confusion about the scale or context to which principles apply. So to be specific, in Etheric Studies, organizing principles are described in terms of fundamental concepts within the context of Reality, Formation and Personality.

Some principles such as differentiation, life Field and agreement appear to be universal. However, it is important to note that the Implicit Cosmology assumes Source is learning about itself via aspect personalities. As such, Source’s nature is expected to evolve as understanding is gained, meaning that the organizing principles also evolve. This is also a fundamental concept of the Hypothesis of Formative Causation.

New Ager: The idea of a new age begins with the idea that, in terms of astrology, we are entering into the utopian age of Aquarius. There is no single organization that can be identified as The New Age Movement. It has become a worldwide community identified by a common viewpoint. New Agers are commonly interested in developing personal, human potential, understanding nature and living as a good citizen of the universe. Beliefs include a universal god of which everyone and everything is part, personal responsibility, respect for the life in all things and the connectedness of all things. Being seen as a New Ager is perhaps a badge of honor because it signifies a personal desire to be the best citizen possible in Mother Nature’s creation. A person who is seen as a New Ager is not necessarily a person who believes in transcommunication, survival of personality or a greater reality.

It should be noted that many concepts associated with the New Age community, which tend to be subjective, are avoided by some people studying survival of personality. This is primarily true if the study of survival is based on an objective approach.

Nonlocal: ubiquitous or everywhere at once. It may be correct to say that “everywhere is here.” This is a physical space perspective. In the etheric, movement is accomplished by changing one’s mind. See the nonlocal in the Transcommunication Essay. Also see nontemporal

Nonphysical:  Not of this physical aspect of reality; the Etheric. Some may think of nonphysical reality as:

  • The higher planes of existence
  • Beyond the Veil
  • The other side
  • A different dimension
  • Finer worlds
  • Spirit world
  • Etheric reality
  • Heaven

However you think of it, the idea is that there is one reality but that this reality has aspects.  Our physical universe is one aspect of reality. Here, we are referring to the greater reality beyond our physical universe as the etheric or etheric space.

Nontemporal: The concept that every time is now. This is a term that makes most sense from the physical perspective because it seems that some phenomena indicate time independence.  It is arguable that, in the physical, processes take time.

There is some indication that presentiment, the physiological reaction to an event before it actually occurs, is best explained with First Sight Theory. Presentiment is a short-term phenomenon while most reports of precognition indicate a long-term effect. In that, the concept of emerging thoughtforms representing potential futures might better explain the effect.

A second factor is the concept of potential. Rather than precognition as sensing the future, there is better support for the idea of sensing the potential of a particular future. As such, a nontemporal characteristic of etheric space is probably incorrect.

See the Transcommunication Essay and nonlocal Glossary item.


Objective: Understanding based on empirical evidence supported by sound theory and undistorted by emotion or personal bias

Object of Reality: In the trans-survival hypothesis, reality exists in two forms: life fields which are morphic fields for physical organisms, and expressions of life which are  ideoplastic structures. Expressions are described in terms of thoughtforms that have been given substance in the Creative Process, where substance only has meaning in the venue in which it is imagined.

Objective Phenomena:  Phenomena that have external reality and that can be perceived and observed by others. In contrast to subjective phenomena, objective phenomena are considered the physical manifestation of a subjective influence (conceptual) via a trans-etheric influence.

Organizing Field: See Etheric Field

Ouija Board:  A board with letters of the alphabet. A pointer is placed under the medium’s hand and on the board. Presumably under the control of discarnate entities, messages are spelled out. See: Planchette

Outlier: In statistics, an outlier is a data point that falls very far outside of the norm. The logic is that an outlier may be due to faulty measurement or some otherwise unidentified experimental error. Alternatively, one extreme measurement might give a false impression of what is average. As a general rule, outliers are discarded to avoid inappropriately biasing a dataset. It is noteworthy that a Class A EVP is, by definition, an outlier.


Paranormal:  In the context of Etheric Studies, psi and survival related phenomena; etheric which implies the nonphysical aspect of reality. Paranormal is a good term for conversation that people understands; however, be mindful that some experiences which may not be explained by currently understood principles of nature are nevertheless mundane, physical phenomena.

Such subjects as reincarnation, out-of-body experiences and near-death experiences are not purposefully exclude. It is just that those communities of interest are very insular and have little bearing on this study except as possible items of evidence. As such, there is little reference to them here. The same is true of the many people who experience spontaneous After Death Communication (ADC).

Phenomena thought to be physical but not ordinary, such as UFOs, cryptozoological creatures and parallel realities would likely be considered paranormal, but they are not usually included in Etheric Studies, unless a psi field explanation is involved.

Paranormalist: This term has become useful for identifying people who are more than a little interested in or who are studying or practicing some technique related to the paranormal. Examples of paranormalist interests include the study of psi phenomena (telepathy, remote viewing, telekinesis), energy healing (biofield healing, distant healing, healing prayer),  hauntings investigation, transcommunication (mediumship, Instrumental TransCommunication, channeling) and survival (the etheric, personality, cosmology).

Paranormal Community:  The paranormal community includes anyone involved in the study of personality as it relates to soul, survival of personality and the greater reality. This includes parapsychologists, citizen scientists involved in these subjects, practitioners employing transcommunication techniques, members of ghost hunting clubs and hauntings investigators. People studying human experiences such as near-death and out-of-body experiences can be considered part of this community; however, these people are not necessarily considering nonphysical explanations.

Parapsychologist: Specifically a person who is academically trained in the subject of parapsychology. It is common for academically trained people to cross over from a different specialty, usually psychology, to conduct parapsychological studies. However, crossover scientists should be considered citizen scientists, depending on the extent to which they inform themselves in the subject. It may be appropriate to refer to them as parapsychologists if they have applicable training.

Parapsychology: A frontier subject; a field of study about the evidence for psi phenomena, such as telepathy, clairvoyance and psychokinesis, which are not explained by mainstream science. These phenomena are forms of human potential described as psi functioning. These phenomena are forms of human potential described as psi functioning. In the Implicit Cosmology, the study of trans-etheric phenomena is referred to as Etheric Studies, while it can be said that parapsychology is Psi Studies. See the About Etheric Studies Essay.

Pareidolia: A form of apophenia (seeing patterns where there are none) in which the person finds meaning in images and sounds when there is none. Both of these terms are used to describe a very real human tendency. An example might be the deer hunter who mistakes tree limbs for antlers. See: Gestalt

Peer: Frontier subjects seldom have a large community of academically trained authorities in the field. In many cases, it is practitioners who have come to the subject from another field who may be the only qualified people. Yet, mainstream culture demands that an academically trained person, even if the qualifications are in an unrelated field, should be given authority over the possibly more qualified practitioners who may not hold a degree. Of course, this is an untenable approach to understanding the field of study, so in order to distinguish between different kinds of experience and expertise in etheric studies, a peer is identified as either an academic peer (trained in an accredited educational institution) or a practical peer (may be academically trained outside of the field but in any case, is self-trained in the field).

Peer Review: The examination of a research report by others who are experts in the same field. There are no or very few people working in etheric studies who are academically trained in a related subject. Consequently, review of articles for reasonableness of hypothesis, protocol and conclusions are necessarily accomplished with probably not academically trained subject matter specialists. Because of this necessary departure from academic standards, the process of judging articles is better described as vetting rather than peer review. From ”to appraise, verify or check for accuracy, authenticity, validity, etc.: An expert vetted the manuscript before publication.” See Vetted


Perception: Based on First Sight Theory, perception is the result of the decision made in the Perceptual Loop as illustrated in the Basic Functional Areas of Perception diagram above. If the Agree? decision produces a Yes, the person will experience (perceive) the stimulus, probably more or less as it is. If the decision is Maybe, the person more likely experiences a version of what is intended based on worldview.

Perceptual Agreement: This is an often-used term in the Implicit Cosmology. The Principle of Perceptual Agreement holds that Personality must be in perceptual agreement with the aspect of reality with which it will associate. The objective of progression toward greater understanding is to bring worldview (personal reality) into agreement with nature as it is and not as the person is taught.

As shown in the Basic Functional Areas of Perception Diagram above, perception is a function of external information filtered by worldview. Note that the two lines connecting Worldview and Visualization are labeled Belief and Understanding. Progression toward fulfillment of an inherited urge to understand the nature of reality is a function of the degree of understanding gained through experience. However, the dominant influence for what the average person becomes aware of (perception) is belief.

Movement in etheric space is directed by intention, but limited by what a personality is able to visualize. This, in turn is limited by perception and the Perceptual Loop. Therefore, the ability to associate with any aspect of reality is seen to be limited by perception.

A historical note: This concept began as Energetic Agreement, intending energetic to mean a complex of understanding and knowing. This complex was visualized as producing a unique character of etheric energy. However, further study showed that the concept of energy is specific to the physical aspect of reality. In the etheric, potential is produced by the creative process and measured by intention. See the Creative Process and Perceptual Agreement Essays.

Person: A person is an immortal self entangled with a human in an avatar relationship. In the avatar relationship, the personality remains associated with the etheric aspect of reality but its perspective is the personality’s conscious self, as it thinks it is the physical body. Distinguish between immortal self-centric perspective (I am this) and body-centric perspective (I think I am this).

Personality: Personality is defined here as the etheric essence of a person. From the perspective that a person is a physical body that has evolved in the physical and mind which has evolved in the etheric, personality is that part of a person that has evolved in the etheric. Personality existed before this lifetime and will continue after this lifetime. It can be thought of as an etheric field containing the essence of who the person is including a measure of the person’s understanding which is realized as Progression and an inherited urge to acquire understanding by way of experience.

Personality has a point of view; however, that might be from the perspective of an avatar. Based on the Comparing Mind-Body Models essay, the physical body in this lifetime enables personality to experience this physical venue for learning. It is thought that personality always maintains a point of view and that it shares the point of view of its avatar while the body is alert. While personality is believed to maintain a personal point of view as “I am this,” it is also thought to be associated with a larger community of personalities as a cooperating group or collective.

A personality is a life field and Source is seen as the top personality. Since a fundamental characteristic of a life fields is the Creative Process, just as Source is a creator personality so all other personalities (life fields) are creator personalities.

The illustration here represents the relationship between personality in the etheric (the star) and the physical body. The bright spot represents the point of view which is associated with the personality but is also associated with the physical body during a lifetime. This is the avatar model. See the essay on Personality

Phenomena:  In the context of Etheric Studies, any manifestation of intention into physical form; a trans-etheric influence. Examples include: mediumship, clairvoyance, biofield healing, ITC and psychokinesis.

Planchette:   A small table-like device that can be easily moved over a surface containing letters, words or other information. In application, one or more participants lightly place fingers on the device. It is thought to move under the control of an etheric personality. A planchette might also have a pencil attached so as to mark a paper when it is moved.

Point of View: Used to describe the perspective or viewpoint in literature and art. In terms of living a life, people also have a point of view, and just as the author intends the reader to come away with a specific perspective of the story, so does a person’s point of view direct us toward understanding a specific perspective of experiences. See the Point of View Essay.

Potential Field: Events are accompanied by a probability signature referred to here as a potential field. In this concept, an event might exist in the etheric as a potential to occur. Each potential field represents the possible characteristics of an event, so that an event that has occurred may have been preceded by many potential fields representing different or optional potential outcomes.

Practitioner: In Etheric Studies, a person conducting a recording session for EVP or ITC; a person who applies principles intended to cause phenomena; may be instrumental or it may be direct as in mental mediumship. See: Modes of Transcommunication

Precipitation: By definition, a precipitate is something that condenses out of a solution and falls as a deposit. Rain or snow is one example. A precipitation medium is one who is able to work with etheric helpers to produce physical objects, via precipitation. A good example of this is the Reverend Hoyt Z. Robinette as described in the article, Sitting with Hoyt Robinette. Currently available evidence indicates that the precipitate originates in the physical and is in effect, dematerialized, transported via the etheric and rematerialized according to the intended order expressed by the medium (may be under the direction of communicating entities). In effect, this is the same process thought to be involved with apportation of object, except that the precipitate becomes objective in a new form. See: Materialization

Precognition: Knowledge of something in advance of its occurrence, especially by psi sensing; clairvoyance.

Presentiment: The sense that something is about to happen. In parapsychology, studies indicate that a person will unconsciously react to a stimulus just before it is delivered. When the response is in reference to an event that occurs in the near future (seconds, minutes), it is referred to as presentiment, however, if the event is relatively more in the future (hours, years)), this is usually referred to as precognition.

There is growing understanding that every event has a psi signature, and that the body unconsciously senses this signature. Research now suggests that this signature may also relate to a growing potential for the event to occur. Presentiment and precognition seem to support the concept of a nontemporal nature of reality, meaning that all time is now. However, sensing that something is about to happen may be sensing the potential of for the event to occur, rather than clairvoyantly seeing into the future to experience the event. There seems to be more support for the idea that time is not nontemporal.

Prime Imperative: This is a rather flamboyant way of saying that the one purpose everyone seems to share is to gain understanding from experience. This concept is fundamental to the Implicit Cosmology. That is, Source exists and reality is an expression of Source. Curious to understand the nature of its own expression (implications, the so what), it is speculated that Source expressed aspects of itself to explore reality and eventually return understanding of its nature. As aspects of Source, we share this curiosity and the urge to understand … everything. In effect, this understanding gained during a lifetime is our payload as we transition out of this lifetime and become more in agreement with Source (progression).

Process: A process is an ordered sequence of events. In metaphysics, creation through process is an important alternative to the idea that a fully mature reality might spring into existence. The Creative Process is described as attention on the expression of an imagined outcome with the intention of making it so.

Progression: Based on the Trans-survival Hypothesis, Source has the characteristics of curiosity and intention. In the same way that a person creates personal reality, Source is hypothesized to have created aspects of itself to understand its nature. As it is speculated for a personality, the new aspect of reality (sub-reality) resulting from this initial aspectation would be a subset of what Source believes reality to be (Personal reality).

As shown in the diagram for Progression at the right, the initial expression is thought to have produced a relatively naive and uncomplicated version of Source’s actual nature. Like Source, personalities resulting from the aspectation would be relatively immature in their understanding of reality; however, subsequent aspectations would be based on increasingly correct understanding of the nature of reality (the actual nature of Source).

The presumed objective of progression is returning to Source an understanding of its true nature. As such, the characteristic of Perceptual Agreement would be understanding. Personality’s process of achieving this understanding is progression resulting in perceptual understanding that would agree with Source–not in content, which would be new to Source, but agreement in a sense of knowing that understanding is, indeed, in accordance with the actual nature of Source.

Pseudoscience: A derogatory term coined by skeptics to label subjects with which they disagree. This disagreement is seldom based on known instances of bad science, but rather because, in the Skeptical view, the subject is not supported by orthodox science. This term is virtually always used in conjunction with efforts to convince an audience to dislike, mistrust or even fear the subject. See: Frontier Subject. and the Pseudoscience Essay

Pseudoskeptic: Pseudoskeptics or false skeptic is a term that refers to people who reject ideas without examination if they do not seem to be supported by mainstream science. Since pseudoskeptics proudly refer to themselves as skeptics and it is under that title that they are found on the Internet, the ATransC refers to them as skeptics. See: Skeptic

Psi: Term coined by J. B. Rhine to represent the unknown force involved in Extrasensory Perception and psychokinesis. It is popularly used today to mean psychic. Psi represents processes and elements in nature or in the human personality, which appear to transcend the accepted limiting principles of science.

Psi Field: Etheric field are described in parapsychology as a psi field. While physical energy is local and time dependent, as defined in parapsychology, the psi field is experienced as being everywhere at the same time. The term, psi, is often used in the Implicit Cosmology as it is intended in parapsychology. It is modeled as interconnected etheric fields, each instance being associated with a life field’s perception.

The psi field probably should not be modeled as one global field, as there appears to be dependencies such as perceptual agreement that influence how strong the apparent interconnection is between personalities. The Etheric Fields Essay explains the  nomenclature for other instances of field.

Psi Functioning: The expression of intention on the subtle energy referred to as psi.

Psych-: This prefix is generally seen in psychology for mind or mental, which in paranormal phenomena, assumes the person is the direct causative agent, when it has not been determined that such influence is not accomplished in cooperation with or by an etheric personality.

Psychic:  Ability to access information by sensing the nature of the psi field. In the past, this ability has been referred to as Extra Sensory Perception or ESP, but more recently it is known as Psi functioning. It is correct to say that a person is psychic or to refer to a psychic ability. A psychic may not necessarily function as a medium. A Psychic may be able to foretell the future, excel in psychometry and be clairvoyant but would not say that this information was coming from an etheric personality. See the Mediumship essay for a discussion about the distinction between psychic and medium.

Psychogenic: From an emotional or psychological origin.

Psychokinesis (P.K.):  Movement of an object via psi functioning. This is a term used in parapsychology. Telekinesis is an alternative term meaning to have an influence from a distance. See: Telekinesis

Psychometry: In psychometry, information is accessed about a place, object and/or the owner of the object by touching an object, an auric field or the local environment such as near a person or in a building. This is a form of psi functioning in which the practitioner senses information carried by objects or places in which their history is thought to be imprinted.




Raps:  A common feature of physical séances. Noises are heard as knocks, pops, cracks and bangs. Coded communication is possible. Current research indicates that the raps originate within the material, suggesting they are psychokinetically induced.

Rapport: Relationship, especially one of mutual trust or emotional affinity. Transcommunication messages have emphasized the importance of rapport within a circle wishing to develop physical phenomena.

The attention/intention relationship amongst life fields can be characterized as rapport. Likewise, the link of entanglement between etheric personality and its avatar and between a top organizing field and its subfields might be characterized in terms of rapport. See the Principle of Rapport and SORRAT

Reality: Reality is seen in the Implicit Cosmology as a fundamental characteristic of all there is. And here, all there is, is defined as the life field referred to in this cosmology as Source. That would make Source’s life field the reality field. While there is one reality, experienced reality is relative because as it is perceived by individuals as a personal aspect of reality. As it is experienced by individuals, it is a local aspect of reality.

If Source is just an aspect of an even greater reality, then that greater reality must be treated as being well beyond the scope of this cosmology. Here, all things begin with Source as a basic assumption. See the Reality essay.

Reincarnation:  The rebirth of the personality in another physical body. Based on the Implicit Cosmology, it appears that some people may choose to reincarnate into this physical venue for learning; however, it is as likely that a person will decide to move on to a different venue for learning, depending on the need for experience. It should be noted that a past life regression is capable of calling up a thoughtform representing a someone’s lifetime that might help answer the sitter’s needs to learn, even though it is not that person’s past life. This is a common explanation for why so many people have been important historical figure in their past.

Researcher: While an EVP practitioner conducts routine recordings for the collection of information, a researcher conducts experiments following a protocol designed to provide verifiable data. In frontier subjects, it is more often the practitioners who must conduct research.

Residual Energy: Living organisms are thought to emanate a form of energy sometimes referred to as the biofield. This is usually the heat, light and electromagnetic signature of biological processes. Life forms are also thought to have a psi field which is associated with their organizing field and mental expressions. Some characteristics of these fields are believed to accumulate– (perhaps as a weak form of entanglement with an ideoplastic structure). This residual signature is thought to be expressed in greater “abundance” when the person expresses extreme emotions. Thus, locations with long-time human occupancy, especially hospitals and theaters, are thought to have a strong presence of this residual field. See: Contact Field

Retrocognition: Awareness or knowledge of facts of past events or persons acquired by means of psychic ability.

Revelation: Something revealed especially a dramatic disclosure of something not previously known or realized.


Science: Science is a methodology based on:

  • Observation query and codification of natural process
  • Development of hypotheses which describe what has been observed
  • Predictions about the behavior of the subject based on hypotheses
  • The endless repetition of testing predictions, observation and refinement of hypotheses
  • A community of subject matter specialist who conduct science, report results and collaborate amongst the community in an effort to further understanding and avoid misconception
  • Dissemination of acquired best judgment to the larger community intended to offer guidance which furthers the welfare of the community

Scientism: The belief that science, the scientific method and work product is the only way to validate reality. In practical terms, scientism holds that, if something is not recognized by mainstream science, then it is not real and is, therefore, impossible. When people under the cloak of authority of science advise the public about any subject without analysis of available information about that subject, for instance calling the subject pseudoscience, they are effectively practicing scientism.

Scientific Method: A systematic approach to gaining understanding about a subject. There are a number of techniques commonly used for research. Statistical analysis, for instance, is used as a means of determining whether or not there is a significant difference between control and experimental results. Also common is meta-analysis which involves reviewing many research reports to identify trends. It is becoming evident that techniques which are useful for physical phenomena may not be appropriate for the study of trans-etheric influences. As such, it should be cautioned that one size does not fit all.” See the Scientific Method Essay.

Séance:  A group of people sitting for the purpose of obtaining psychic manifestations or for establishing transcommunication. The presence of an established physical medium is helpful, but in development circles, the group may seek to have one of their members emerge as a new physical medium. Séances are typically conducted in a completely dark room; however, some choose to work in dim light or red light.

Sitter:  The attendees of a séance or sitting; a person who is the point of attention for a medium or for psi functioning.

Skeptic: Perhaps the most important trait for anyone involved in the study of frontier subjects is the ability to maintain an open mind while practicing discernment. This attitude is sometimes referred to as skepticism; however, when a person is skeptical of something without reason, that person is popularly known as a skeptic.

Rather than practicing discernment, skeptics actively campaign to teach the public to see new thought as a hazard to society. As is already occurring in some governments, including the USA, this vilification of frontier subjects has the potential to cause social and governmental reaction that could at the least prevent further study and possibly provoke action harmful to people studying these subjects. Because of this, it is no longer realistic to ignore skeptics or their efforts.

A potentially useful alternative term for the kind of skepticism practiced by skeptics is scientism which means the ideological belief that science (mainstream science) is the only authority on the nature of reality. This is where the idea comes from that “If it is impossible according to (main-stream) science, then it cannot be.” The rest of this ideology is that anything not accepted by mainstream science must be pseudoscience.

Skepticism in itself is a healthy attitude so long as it is accompanied by open-minded investigation. Perhaps a better term for open-minded skepticism is discernment.”

Skeptic’s Syndrome: Assumed knowledge which is usually based on faith, belief or popular wisdom but seldom based on empirical evidence. Manifests as the assumption that one’s own understanding of a subject is more correct than that held by others without regard to evidence to the contrary. This attitude is maintained in the face of empirical evidence by making unsupported assumptions, belittling those who do not agree and attempting to associate the opposing view with previously discredited concepts. See: Assumed Knowledge

Source: Source is used in the Implicit Cosmology as the name for the initial cause of reality. This is the same concept as God, First Cause, Infinite Intelligence and Creator Personality. In this hypothesis, Source is credited with the same attributes identified with life fields including self-determination, point of view, purpose and an urge to understand local reality. In fractals, Source is the Prime or Top Fractal. See the Source Essay.

Spirit:  As common usage, spirit refers to the vital principle or animating force of life; the indestructible essence of self-conscious life. The word spirit is often used to describe a discarnate person. The more correct term for a person who has transitioned from a physical lifetime is a person in spirit or a discarnate person. The term, spirit is closely related to religious belief, and so is avoided when discussing metaphysics.

When the healing influence is said to be derived directly from Source (God) and undifferentiated by any other personality, it is said to be coming from Spirit. Here “Spirit” is written with a capital “S.” In common usage, “spirit,” written with a lower case “s,” is a reference to the psi field as it is influenced by intentionality. See: Etheric.

Spiritual: Anything relating to source (aka, Infinite Intelligence, God, Prime Creator or First Cause).  It is reasonable and proper to refer to the purpose and origination of reality as spiritual. A person expressing the high ideals of citizenship in the greater reality might be referred to as spiritual or being spiritual. (Yes, the ideals, themselves are an abstraction, but the point should be clear that a conscious effort to be a good citizen should be clear.)

Spiritual Healing:  See: Healing Intention

Spiritualism: A system of belief based on the acceptance of the survival hypothesis, transcommunication and healing intention. It assumes that all trans-etheric influences including acquisition of information via mediumship and healing intention exists as the cooperation of a medium and a discarnate helper. The NSAC defines Spiritualism as the Science, Philosophy and Religion of continuous life, based upon the demonstrated fact of communication, by means of mediumship, with those who live in the Spirit World.

Spiritualism, especially NSAC Spiritualism, is listed here because it does not require members of the community to believe anything, but does offer a community of like minded seekers. It maintains nine principles which constitute all of the system’s tenets and which are consistent with the Implicit Cosmology. The only belief is the existence of Infinite Intelligence. The rest is acceptance of survival, an assumption of personal responsibility and the expectation that a person will learn to understand the nature of reality and live in accordance with that understanding. Consider reviewing

Stochastic Resonance: Stochastic resonance is an effect that results in a weak signal being amplified in a nonlinear system when a large noise background is applied. A common factor in many forms of trans-etheric influence is the presence of noise. It is speculated that a weak psi influence (signal) is made stronger via stochastic amplification. In electronic circuits, the active regions of tubes and transistors provide the necessary nonlinear condition for amplification. See: Apport and Intended Order

Story Telling: Claiming what was experienced is phenomenal by telling a reasonable story that seems to make the claim sensible. This is a way of leading a witness into believing an event or example is paranormal even though it is mundane. In EVP, something to the effect of: “I asked where my book was and recorded, ‘ten … other …yes.’ The entity was telling me I was only ten feet from it and that it was somewhere other than where I was looking and that ‘yes,’ I will find it.” In fact, the possible EVP had nothing to do with the question, but the story seemed to make it sound like a good answer.

Subjective Phenomena: See Conceptual

Subject Matter Specialist: A person who has more than average experience as a practitioner; may or may not be a researcher, but experience consistent with appropriate science should be considered; participates in peer review; sometimes a citizen scientist.

Subliminal:  Below the threshold of conscious perception; not sufficient to produce conscious awareness but able to cause a response by way of the Perceptual Loop.

Subtle Energy: To be consistent with the Implicit Cosmology, subtle energy should be thought of as an expression of the psi field and not an energy in the usual sense attributed to physical energy. This expression of intended order is experienced as energy because that is the physical equivalent typically held in worldview.

Some kind of etheric-physical interface clearly exists, but in Etheric Studies, it is seen as a physical energy expressed by the creative process (ideoplastic structure) . Also, there does appear to be near-physical phenomena such as the aura and ectoplasm; however, ectoplasm especially, is demonstrated as an ideoplastic field which gains physicality as the expression of intended order.

What is referred to as subtle energy is usually associated with the energy of life, life force, but also psychic or psi field. In parapsychology, psi is a term generally used to mean the factor which enables thought transference, perception of objects not normally perceptible with physical senses, psychokinetic influence or the healing influence of therapeutic touch or prayer. In traditional metaphysics, subtle energy is variously described as vitality, human magnetism, spiritual energy or kundalini energy, and other terms depending on the system of belief.

In Spiritualism, subtle energy is described as spiritual energy and is thought to emanate from a central intelligence known as “Infinite Intelligence,” to be differentiated by incarnate and discarnate people as information or healing energy. See the Etheric Fields Essay.

Super-psi Hypothesis: A theory designed to explain observed psychic abilities, but from the perspective of psychology. Rather than allowing for survived personality, it depends on the belief that, once created, information exists forever. The hypothesis supposes a vast reservoir of residual conscious energy (fossil memory) which is accessible by people who exhibit the ability to access information that should not be available to them using just the five physical senses.

This hypothesis depends on mind as a product of brain, but which is then independent of brain and continues after the brain dies as a survived memory. It also depends on the existence of a psi field, where psi is a place-holder term until more is known about the nature of this subtle field.

Supernormal:   Beyond what is known of physical laws.  Paranormal.

Survival: In the context of metaphysics, the continuance of the personality after the change called death.  It is the fundamental doctrine of Spiritualism.

Survival Hypothesis: See: Trans-Survival Hypothesis


Telekinesis: The movement of objects without normal, obvious, or perceptible means; usually related to psychic ability. Telekinesis is the preferred term because it means to have an influence from a distance. The prefix, psycho- means mind or mental, which is making the assumption that the person is the direct causative agent, when it has not been determined that such influence is not accomplished in cooperation with an etheric personality. See: Psychokinesis

Temperament:  A predisposition to understand experiences. A person’s temperament is based on previous understanding inherited from Source, personality and the personality and human collectives, as it is modified by intended understanding. If a life field is not entangled with a personality, its temperament is likely inherited from its collective.

Thought Ball: Robert Monroe described the method of communication between people he encountered during his out of body travels as an exchange of thought balls he called rotes. Thought balls may be similar to thoughtforms. The term is useful in describing an exchange of information that is sensed as a gestalt impression that includes intention, feelings and imagery as an instantaneous experience. Thought balls appear to contain conceptual information.

Thoughtform: As a rudimentary etheric field, thoughtforms contain information about a specific subject. As an etheric field, they may be nested so that a thoughtform concerned with transportation, for instance, may contain information about all forms of transportation while a red wagon thoughtform would contain information specific to red wagons and would be a subset of the transportation thoughtform.

For perspective, elements of a thoughtform are not piled into a bundle as we have been taught to visualize physical fields. As sets of related concepts, they are entangled with a core concept (wagon, red wagon), but might originate anywhere in reality. The only rule for association appears to be perceptual agreement: although all related concepts would be attracted to the core concept, personality would only be able to access those it is able to perceive (comprehend). The elements of a thoughtform are nonlocal.

In a strict sense, all etheric fields are thoughtforms, but in a practical sense, there appears to be a difference in coherence between a thoughtform as a life field and one that is an ideoplastic expression of a life field. Functional areas of a life field are described as fields, etheric fields or functional areas.  See the Etheric Fields Essay

Trance: A spontaneous or induced sleep-like condition or altered state of consciousness that permits the subject’s body to be used by a discarnate personality for communication. As with other phenomena, it is important that there is substantiating evidence to show that a discarnate being is in control and communicating and that it is not the subconscious mind of the person in trance.

Trance may be very light with little difference than consciousness, either outward or inward. It may be of a very deep with the medium totally unconscious of the surroundings or the messages being spoken via the body. Upon coming back to consciousness, the person so entranced remembers nothing of what has happened while in the trance. To all intents and purposes the personality speaking and the person in trance are entirely different.

In light trance, it is common for the person to remember what was said, but that memory tends to be short-lived, as if it had less than normal effect on the person’s conscious mind.

The conscious self of a person in trance is thought to step aside so that a different personality can temporarily use the body to communicate in the physical. This is an important difference from mental mediumship in that a mental medium remains in control and the communication is thought to occur in the etheric as a mind-to-mind exchange. The mental medium must translate the etheric conceptual information into concrete terms using his or her library of concepts and language (worldview). One way this difference is seen is that a trance medium might speak in a language unknown to him or her, while a mental medium must use a known language.

It is important to note that some people appear to be functional trance channels. By this, it is meant that some people appear to be able to slip in and out of trance without realizing the difference. The results is that the person will normally access information from worldview via the Perceptual Loop but occasionally and spontaneously bypass this unconscious process to directly access information from the etheric. This is a matter of changing lucidity.

Trans-: Across, from there to here. Used here as across the interface from the greater reality to the physical aspect of reality. Etheric is used as shorthand to indicate the greater reality.

Transcommunication: AA trans-etheric influence that is intended to be communication; trans-etheric communication. Not all trans-etheric influences are considered communication. Some, such as residual influence phenomena may simply happen without regard to who is experiencing the event.

Ernst Senkowski coined the term, Instrumental TransCommunication or ITC, to describe meaningful anomalies including extraordinary voices, computer text, recorded images and images found on video displays suggestive of a continuance of life after death. (Because of common use in this field, terms with a trans- prefix can be used without the hyphen.) Note that After Death Communication (ADC), Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP) and mediumship should be considered forms of transcommunication.

Trans-etheric: From the etheric aspect of reality to the physical aspect of reality. The trans- prefix is always used here to mean across the veil.

Trans-etheric Communication: See Transcommunication

Trans-etheric Influence: The expression of intended order from the etheric to the physical; when an etheric personality communicates with a physical person or when a hauntings event occurs. All trans-etheric influences are considered conceptual influences producing objective effects. See Transcommunication

Transfiguration: Recognizable portrayals of discarnate persons are formed over the medium’s features. This phenomenon usually takes place in dim light as ectoplasm is thought to be used to produce the transformation. In good subjects the ectoplasmic material can be seen during the forming process.

Transform EVP: In ITC, available physical energy is transformed into words or images. That is, the resulting voice in EVP has much the same frequency profile as the background noise. The physical process thought to be involved is stochastic amplification of a weak signal imposed via the psychokinetic expression of intention. Although EVP are formed by EVPmaker, on close examination, most of the EVP are found to be transform EVP. Virtually all EVP reported from radio-sweep (also known as ghost boxes or spirit boxes), which are actually EVP, are transform. Transform EVP appears to require an analog stage in the circuitry which includes an active component such as a transistor.

Transition: A term used to describe the process of dying out of this physical aspect of reality (this lifetime) and the return of focus of attention to the more natural environment of reality. Transition is a more accurate term for what is currently called death.

Transition appears to be a process which begins with the unconscious self aspect of the personality preparing to disengage from the physical as the body loses its vitality. This is followed by movement of the conscious self aspect of personality from the physical (I am this body) point of view to a transitional perspective during which the personality begins a process of reconsidering worldview.

The period of conscious introspection and adjustment is often referred to as “getting well” because people who had physical impairments reportedly take a while to realize they are no longer so influenced by their now dead body.

Transition appears to include a period of introspection as the personality examines what has been learned, what remain as beliefs and what needs to be reconsidered. This self-evaluation is reportedly followed by entrance into a new venue for learning. All that is known for sure is that personalities who have been able to communicate have indicated the need to “go on” and then stopped communicating.

An important aspect of the Implicit Cosmology is the difference between personality and conscious self. Personality is the core intelligence of the etheric life field. While the conscious self is an aspect of personality (Little Me), communication between the two is filtered by worldview. Worldview inherits a degree of understanding from personality upon aspectation, but thereafter is dependent on the physical environment and new understanding.

The two aspects (personality and Little Me) are forever entangled, leaving Little Me with the urge to return understanding to source personality. But in terms of perceptual agreement, they are separated by the local information accumulated during the lifetime. In one view, this difference does not matter and Little Me is able to transition directly back to its source personality. However, in a more persistent view, once differentiated into an individual, Little Me must find a way to purge worldview of beliefs. It is thought to do so by way of multiple lifetimes in different venues as it gains understanding.

Trans-Survival Hypothesis: A theoretical model designed to put current understanding about the continuation of personality after transition (physical death) into a form that can be used to predict outcomes of future research. This is the ATransC version of the survival hypothesis used in parapsychology. It is rather different from the parapsychological version because it incorporates what has been learned in the study of transcommunication.

This hypothesis is an attempt to identify objective studies which support the Survival Hypothesis over the Super-psi Hypothesis, and of course, the Physical Universe Hypothesis. The Implicit Cosmology is designed to provide a model of reality that is based on the implications of the Trans-survival Hypothesis. See the Trans-Survival Hypothesis Essay for a full explanation


Understanding: The presumed objective of progression is returning to Source an understanding of its true nature. As such, the main characteristic of Perceptual Agreement is how two or more personalities understand their local reality . Personality’s process of achieving this understanding is Progression resulting in perceptual understanding that would agree with Source–not in content, which would be new to Source, but agreement in a sense of Knowing that understanding is, indeed, in accordance with the actual nature of Source.


Vetted: In Etheric Studies, peer review is used in the sense of vetting a manuscript, report or article with emphasis on reasonableness of assumptions, hypothesis and conclusions. A properly vetted article will have been commented on by people with relevant experience and training and those comments will have been incorporated into the document. The reviewer(s) and relevant qualifications should be noted as part of the public record. See Peer Reviewed and the Peer Reviewed Online Journals Essay.

Video ITC: ITC using a video camera, most often arranged in a video loop circuit with a television set that is configured to see only the Video In signal from the Video Out of the camera. The video camera is aimed at the television set and the output of the video camera is connected to the television Video In. The resulting video loop produces considerable optical noise. It is common to find faces and other features in individual video frames.  See Trans-etheric Influence

Voice Box (ectoplasmic): In traditional Spiritualism, voices heard by everyone as coming from somewhere in the air, were thought to have been created by way of an ectoplasmic voice box enabled by a physical medium under the control of a discarnate personality. In view of transform phenomena, apports and precipitation phenomena, the actual mechanism for such direct voice may be more complex.


Worldview: This term is central to explanations about the nature of personality. Worldview is considered a functional area which is much like a database. When a person is born into this lifetime, etheric personality-physical body entanglement is established in an avatar relationship. The worldview database is essentially empty but it has a front-end algorithm which represents personality’s progression (understanding) as perception and an inclination toward experiences that offered the opportunity for specific areas of understanding.

The worldview database is populated by culture, family, media, religion and schools as biased by the front-end algorithm. It is the worldview which acts as a filter to determine how the person reacts to situations–prejudices, beliefs, acceptance or rejection of information. Worldview follows a person through transition and influences postmortem experiences.

In an avatar relationship, worldview is shared by the host human. This relationship is shown in the Life Field Complex Diagram (above for Mind). As such, the entangled conscious self is subject to influences from the human as well. Having evolved in the physical, the life field for the human body is thought to be a morphic field, and its worldview would contain Nature’s habits and evolving influences from the Life Field Complex Perceptual Loop. Also see the Personality Essay


Xenoglossy: Writing in tongues unknown to the medium.

X-Ray Vision: Usually a power that is claimed by some healers.  It is the ability to see affected organs within the body. Some sensitives also have claimed this ability and say it is how they read messages that are sealed in envelopes. See: Psychometry and Clairvoyance



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