The below has been excerpted from Selected Correspondence Vineeto: John Wren Lewis of which the original can be found in full linked below. The reason I have done so here is not to take away anyone's thunder, but, instead of going directly to the original --- which I recommend doing after reading the excerpt --- is because the original is not nearly as clear as it could be.

In the original, relevant portions regarding Wren-Lewis used in comparison with what I am trying to get across are found in paragraphs that double-repeat themselves, more than confusing the issue. What I've done is to have basically removed the duplications allowing a smoother flow of content. However, again, once read, you should really go to the original so linked. In the end Vineeto and I are not in agreement regarding her evaluation of Wren-Lewis and the depth of his Enlightenment, if any, with me laying out my evaluation in Footnote [13] of Dark Luminosity with back-up data yet to be refuted.

What follows is a back-and-forth between Vineeto and a person Vineeto calls the "Respondent." Although not shown, the below starts out with Vineeto answering a question given by the Respondent related to three cases for consideration that seems to the Respondent as being like 'genuine enlightenment' without the typical meditation and preparation that goes along with seeking it. Wren-Lewis is one of those three and of which has been selected out for our purposes here.

the Wanderling

VINEETO: John Wren-Lewis was not a complete novice to religion and spirituality before his near death experience incident. He had developed strong interest in problems of relationship between science and religion, leading to frequent broadcasts and to over 300 articles in leading periodicals, as well as contributions to numerous books and he also developed a strong interest in psychology and religion, leading to publication of the now famous essay in Psychoanalysis Observed and to appointment as Advisor to the Association of Psychotherapists in the United Kingdom. In 1971 left industry to become Visiting Professor in Religious Studies at the University of California and thereafter at New College, Sarasota, Florida. His book, ‘What Shall We Tell the Children?’ is widely used as study of the basis of religious education in a scientifically oriented culture. Additionally he is married to, and very likely influenced by, Ann Faraday who is a self-realized person in her own right.

VINEETO: As for John Wren-Lewis – his near death experience after eating a poisoned lolly on a bus in Thailand did not make him enlightened as for instance Dan Sutera tries to make him out to be. John Wren-Lewis himself describes the experience of ‘the Void’ as fluctuating in a Spiritual Magazine published in 1991 –

[John Wren-Lewis]: ‘I still slip back into that old clouded state frequently, but this is not a process of ‘coming down.’ What happens is something I would have found unbelievable had I heard of it second-hand – namely, I again and again simply forget about the pearl of great price. I drift off into all kinds of preoccupations, mostly trivial, and become my old self, cut off from the Void-Background. Then, after a while, there begins to dawn on me a sense of something missing, at which point I recall the Void and usu-ally click back into the new consciousness almost immediately, with no effort at all.’

His NDE was rather the cataclysmic event that sparked an intense interest in enlightenment just as similar near death experiences have either initiated or intensified the search for enlightenment for other people. Ramana Maharshi and Mohan Rajneesh are examples that spring to mind.(see)

RESPONDENT: What I do know of John Wren-Lewis is although he had an interest in science and religion, etc – he has often characterized his ‘enlightenment’ as being quite opposite in nature to his former dismissals of such. For example, from –

[John Wren Lewis]: ‘Before I had my experience, I was a Freud-style skeptic about all things mystical. I wouldn’t have called myself an atheist or materialist; in fact I’d published extensively on the need for a religious world view appropriate to a humanity that has come of age in the scientific and technological area. But I emphasized that such a faith would have to be essentially positivistic, focused on the human potential for creative change, which I believed could become as effective in the social realm as it has been in the physical realm. I even believed it possible that the creative human personality might eventually discover technologies for transcending mortality, but I saw mysticism as a neurotic escape into fantasy, due to failure of nerve in the creative struggle’.

VINEETO: Yes, I came across this quote in my research on him. It goes to show that being skeptical is not the same thing as having investigated and abandoned one’s beliefs, doesn’t it?

RESPONDENT: If one admits that the experience of John Wren-Lewis was a ‘genuine enlightenment’ ...

VINEETO: Why would you say ‘if one admits…’ when John Wren-Lewis himself admits that he still slips ‘back into that old clouded state frequently’? Do you have a different definition of enlightenment than that of a permanent altered state of consciousness, a permanent transcendence of the ego?

RESPONDENT: ... then it does certainly seem to be an exception. Of course, the wavering quality, its here now, gone now quality might lead some to disqualify it as genuine.

VINEETO: I would certainly disqualify his experience as genuine enlightenment, but I have come across a lot of people, particularly of the Advaita/Non-Dualistic persuasion who have a vested interest in watering down genuine enlightenment into varying states of ‘self’-realization whereas all genuinely enlightened beings point to a single edifying moment of awakening (with a variety of descriptions).








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