About the Author
I grew up in Studio City, California. When I was seven, my father gave me a model airplane to build. The kit came with what seemed innumerable pieces to cut out and glue together. As my plane painstakingly took shape, I was proud of my efforts. But then came the last step of attaching the wings to the body of the airplane. This was tricky. I had to hold the parts together with my fingers until the glue set. Time can move so slowly when you are seven. I made several attempts to hold the parts together long enough for the glue to dry, but I became impatient and kept letting go too soon. The wings fell off, over and over again. In a fit of anger, I took my fist and smashed the plane to bits. And then came the tears. Why did I destroy the very thing I loved? I eventually calmed down, picked up the broken pieces, and began gluing them back together. Starting all over seemed like climbing a mountain, but that’s what I did. And while finally learning how to build a model plane, I learned how anger leads to destruction, and how forgiveness—of myself, for taking out my rage on that little plane—could rebuild shattered pieces of the heart. Perhaps most important, I learned the value of patience and how applying it can build the confidence to master a task. What a wonderful gift. With it, doors open and abilities you thought impossible to attain become second nature. As a teenager, I drew upon that early lesson in customizing my 1932 Ford coupe with a souped-up V8 engine. It was thrilling to drive one of the fastest cars on the road. At the quarter-mile dragstrip, it clocked at 92 miles per hour, very fast for 1953. Some of the happiest times of my life were spent working on that hot rod.
At 17, I enlisted in the U.S. Navy and was assigned to the flight crew of an aircraft carrier. The giant ship sailed around Cape Horn, the southernmost point of South America, up to Chile. I got the chance to explore Cuba, Haiti, Hawaii, Japan, China, and the Philippines. Exposure to these other cultures was eye- and heart-opening. I credit my stint in the military with helping me grow in character, self-discipline and focus.
This growth served me in developing a career as a professional builder. The ability to formulate an idea, capture a vision of the finished result and follow it through to fruition became my trade. Starting from the design to drawing the plans, I was able to build homes from the ground up, including framing, cabinetry, custom interiors, windows and doors, to installing the electricity and plumbing. The luxurious two-story, custom-converted rapid transit bus I now live in, with its second-floor bedrooms and energy-producing solar panels, is an example of an award-winning vision materialized. But I have always been just as interested in the nonmaterial aspects of existence. Throughout my life, I have talked to people to find out why they believe as they do. My father was a High Mason, and my mother took me to Christian churches and Theosophy meetings when I was a child. But in my early thirties, I could sense deep within me that the time had come to embark on my own quest for spiritual truth. It dawned on me that I had accepted beliefs that had little basis in my own experience of life. When I started to question these assumptions, I realized how asleep I was. I had no idea who I truly was. I began reading books about enlightenment and higher states of consciousness. In studying various religions, it became clear to me that each path, while valuable, revealed only a fragment of the truth.
I was 36 when a friend who knew of my quest gave me a brochure explaining the ancient science of soul travel, the ability to leave the body at will and explore the inner worlds. Though as a child I’d had many out-of-body experiences which I assumed were natural experiences everyone had, the concept of soul travel was new and exciting to me.
We all have those inspirational moments in which an answer to an important question hits us like a thunderbolt. A burst of knowledge fills your head, and a mystery is instantly understood. That is how I felt as I read through the pamphlet describing soul travel.
Suddenly the mystical made sense, and I felt a powerful surge of clarity. I began to research soul travel, reading everything I could find on the subject. I performed the spiritual exercises from my friend’s brochure, then more from other related books. These spiritual exercises rekindled the out-of-body experiences I’d had early in life, now much more meaningful because I truly understood them.
Writing To Soar Beyond the Stars has given me a chance to share some of these experiences. I dare to hope that I can provide a few clues to the amazing mystery that is life.