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Record Type: Review   ID: 435

Beyond Death: The Undiscover'd Country

Murphet, Howard

 The subject matter of this popular book is the nature of life beyond the grave. Murphet, who is a journalist, has collected the evidence, intimations, and primary teachings regarding life after death. He draws not only on evidential data and the literature of spiritualism and psychical research but mysticism, philosophy and religion. He unabashedly states that his aim is to help laypeople "to see life and death in a new, and possibly happier, perspective" (p. xi). The first part is on parental and religious teachings. Part 2 surveys primitive people, the Egyptians, Greeks, and the Mysteries. Psychical research is surveyed next, then deathbed experiences and near-death experiences, and reincarnation memories. The fifth chapter presents the teachings of theosophy, Rosicrucianism and Swedenborgianism regarding life after death. Spiritualistic teachings are the subject of the next chapter. Chapter 7 presents the teachings of Hinduism, Christian Science, and the Tibetan Book of the Dead. The final chapter is a summing up in which Murphet describes common factors expressed throughout the book, and he concludes with these lines: "Through right studies and right living, through prayer and meditation, we should get our feet firmly on the spiritual path that will lead us beyond the heavens to the eternal land that is nowhere yet everywhere, the Divine Ground of our own Being" (p. 198). This book offers much to ponder for those who do not feel constrained to limit their thinking to the results of empirical studies, and who feel that thought itself can exert a powerful influence in their lives and those of others.
Publisher Information:Wheaton, IL: Theosophical Publishing House, 1990. 206p. Index: 201-206; Suggested reading: 199-200
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