The etheric place: Notes on finding the supernatural at the boundaries of sleep
Whilst conducting qualitative studies with both Christians who report hearing supernatural voices and Spiritualists who report clairaudience, we have encountered numerous instances of what appeared to be hypnagogic and hypnopompic experiences being deemed spiritual by our participants. Taking place at the boundary between wakefulness and sleep, these occurrences involve voices, visions, and tactile phenomena. We note that they also seem to have common characteristics that may distinguish them from other reported spiritual or religious experiences: 1) Clear and external aurality when involving voices, 2) Ambiguous messages or initial meanings, and 3) Later attribution to a supernatural agent.
The Journal for the Study of Religious Experience is a peer-reviewed, open-access journal. All journal content, except where otherwise noted, is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
The copyright for articles published in this journal is retained by the authors and the Journal for the Study of Religious Experience. Authors would need to request the reuse of the article in case they want to publish it elsewhere and they should acknowledge the initial publication in JSRE.
Authors are permitted and encouraged to post online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) a link to the Journal’s website where the article may be downloaded for free.
Authors are responsible for ensuring copyright clearance for any images, tables, etc. which are supplied from an outside source.