This anonymous scientist has a Ph.D. in Sociology and Human Communications, and has been an Associate Professor. Now retired but working on a book, he received many grants during his career and made many presentation at national conferences. His experience happened in June of 1984.
Experiences like this can be real thought-provokers, as it is tempting to dismiss them as “just” dreams, the conventional wisdom, but when they happen to you and don’t feel like a dream…
An Unwanted Spiritual Mien
Being born into a religious family, but rejecting it later in life, I experienced the visual presence of a dark spiritual persona that awakened me from my sleep.
I had been going through a traumatic set of experiences involving a close family member and was tense and exhausted. Thus, one might find alternative explanations for what happened.
Living in my house during her trauma, the young relative was going through intensive emotional episodes, some of which appeared to be very self-destructive. She was living a very difficult life and wound up in a psychiatric institution for a brief period of time.
During that period of time, while she was in hospital, I began to pray, hoping for emotional sustenance to get through the tragic series of events. In the middle of the early morning darkness, a knock sounded on the door, awakening me. I sat up in bed, wondering who would be at my door at that hour.
A sort of dark, hooded, hunched figure moved out of the adjoining bedroom and through the kitchen door, which was closed, into the hallway. It glanced furtively at me as it left, suggestive of extreme disappointment and chagrin.
That singular event was never repeated, although at least one other time the knocking on the door occurred, shortly thereafter.
My explanation of the event turned on whether I was dreaming at the time. My recall says that I was not. If it was a dream, it was very life-like, unlike anything I have ever experienced.
In my own psychological desperation during the traumatic events of my young relative, I turned to the ‘White Light of Christ’ as a protection. It is against this psychological, symbolic backdrop that this event occurred.
Could there have been a negative spiritual being who lived in the house at that time? Could the White Light of Christ be an actuality or merely a symbolic, psychological and defensive construction, brought about by my own subconscious mechanisms?
It is not likely that I will ever be able to answer these questions, although I am convinced that people who have religious orientations are more likely to symbolize their problems in the ‘linguistic reality’ of that orientation than are those who have never been exposed to religious interpretations. What would Jung have done with it?
Contributor’s Comments on the Experience
My work has not been affected by this experience although as I continue to explore and define ‘symbolic realities’ I include the experience in my exploration. It is quite possible that a separate world, unknown to us except in religious and psychic thinking, exists and that it may be available to us in highly irregular circumstances, much like the experience of seeing wind currents when there is smoke in the air.