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While I am an Association TransCommunication (ATransC) co-director, I do not alone speak for the Association. Because my personal opinions are sometimes more definite than what we would want to be seen as ATransC policy, it seems appropriate for me to establish some degree of separation so that I can be a little more candid.

As such, EthericStudies.org is my personal website. Everything you find here is my opinion which should be considered with great discernment.

Tom Butler


Social Responsibility

Government is an individual responsibility

Only a rational society can expect "government of the people, by the people, for the people" to be a rational government

Here in the United States of America, it is clear that our government listens to the people. It is also clear it listens to the loudest people first.

The growing population of our society can no longer support the "sport" of killing animals with high-powered rifles as practiced by a very few. The average unarmed citizen--our children and family--has just too much access to the wilderness.

When people carry handguns for protection, the specific purpose of the gun is to kill people. In this view, is it rational to consider such dangerous weapons a right to carry? When in public, do you want people around you carrying guns that are only intended to kill people? Why do they hide the guns? Are they really rational citizens?

The slogan that, "When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns," is a false premise posed by people who want to carry guns. That view has frozen our society from action. Any rational person understands that such a process must begin with the first gun.

This point is highlighted by a recent Fox News poll in which a majority of those surveyed felt that "people who do these kinds of things [like Sandy Hook] 'will always find the guns' to commit violent acts." This is a defeatist attitude indicating a belief that nothing can be done because the problem is too big--exactly what the NRA wants us to believe.

The point of view stated in the Second Amendment of the Constitution, "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State..."  is no longer tenable. Technology has made it illogical to think that citizens armed with handguns and rifles can stand up to our government no matter how evil it may become. It is the collective actions of the citizens which protects us.

Keeping the Second Amendment is not the only irrational behavior of our society, but it is one of the most destructive. If we cannot set that right, it may be unreasonable expectation to think our government should be any more rational.

Examine your beliefs. Are these mass killings an acceptable price to pay for the Second Amendment? If you think not, then let our government know. Be a louder voice!

About Etheric Studies

This is a Frontier Subject

The rather large population of people involved in the practice and/or study of trans-etheric survival and associated phenomena has not matured into a cohesive community supporting academic institutions and well-funded research facilities. There are no accredited institutions awarding masters or doctorate-level degrees in the study of trans-etheric influences and funding for such research is limited to questions about the sanity of those who believe these phenomena may be real. Professional organizations do not exist while the numerous groups involved with these phenomena seldom cooperate in studies or even agree on fundamental concepts.

After assuming leadership of the AA-EVP in 2000, Lisa and I attempted to establish and maintain cooperative contact with similar organizations around the world. This included the many hauntings investigation groups and other groups more interested in general trans-etheric phenomena. We have had some success, but early on, it became evident that this frontier subject lacks the necessary culture of cooperation found in more established fields of interest. In short, there is no cultural norm to guide recognition of subject matter expertise or respect for the authority of established models. This, in turn, appears to be at least partially due to the lack of a recognized and respected forum for presenting and vetting ideas.

Hoping to find support for our study, we turned to the more established organizations representing the parapsychological community such as the British Society for Psychical Research (SPR), The Institute for Noetic Sciences (IONS), The Parapsychological Association (PA), The Society for Scientific Exploration (SSE)  and the Academy of Spirituality and Paranormal Studies (ASPSI). All of these are important organizations that provide a valuable service to the people studying psi phenomena, and especially with IONS, who are studying human potential. With a few important exceptions, we have learned that there is a sort of apartheid separating the academically trained community from the lay community. For instance, full membership in the PA requires a doctorate in that field.

Popular wisdom has it that the field of parapsychology includes survival research, but in practical terms, parapsychology is concerned with human potentials such as psi functioning and mind functioning such as near-death experiences and reincarnation. From our observations as people deeply involved with the study of communication with discarnate people, we found very little in these organizations that either supported our work or indicated a willingness to collaborate with us. In practice, the field of parapsychology is concerned with how the mind creates the experience of near-death or out of body travel and is not concerned with whether or not these psychogenic experiences might be explained by actual experiences in the etheric. Thus, we see that the study of survival is more properly seen as the study of psychosis.

Taming the Frontier

Etheric studies began as an AA-EVP initiative intended to promote cooperation among people interested in the study of survival related phenomena. We felt that it should be started in neutral territory so that members of the larger community who might be deeply vested in their own organizations, or who naturally resisted "joining," would feel comfortable cooperating in the Initiative. A wiki was tried first, since the Wikipedia model has produced a large community, albeit a community of skeptics. The wiki did not attract editors and after a couple of years, the wiki and other efforts were abandoned.

Without participation from the larger community, the Etheric Studies Initiative was little more than a "Butler says." Most of the material in on this website has been migrated to the new ATransC website as that focus was broadened to include virtually all forms of etheric studies. This helps top assure that we have a mechanism for preserving work done in the Etheric Studies Initiative, and future effort will include a provision for interactive peer-review in the ATransC Journal and Best Practices sections.

Although numerous articles on atransc.org are written by other people, the bulk of the content is the expression of Lisa and me. There seems to be no alternative at this time since we are not prepared to turn the organization over to a committee. At the same time, we feel that the Etheric Studies Initiative is important and we do not wish to cease our attempts to cultivate a cooperative community. I have decided to use this website as a place in which I can develop my metaphysical model and a platform on which I will comment about the challenges and developments in our community.

Of course, I will continue to be mindful that what I say here might be understood as an "official" ATransC position. In turn, I ask that you remember that the contents of these pages are my attempt to help the larger community.




Help Develop Best Practices

If you consider yourself an activist, are knowledgeable about one or more aspect of transcommunication and wish to help further this frontier field of study, then consider becoming a Collective editor.


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