Guardian Angels Are Here, Say Most Americans
By David Van Biema Thursday, Sep. 18, 2008
Dominic DiSaia / Getty
More than half of all Americans believe they have been helped by a guardian angel in the course of their lives, according to a new poll by the Baylor University Institute for Studies of Religion. In a poll of 1700 respondents, 55% answered affirmatively to the statement, "I was protected from harm by a guardian angel." The responses defied standard class and denominational assumptions about religious belief; the majority held up regardless of denomination, region or education — though the figure was a little lower (37%) among respondents earning more than $150,000 a year. (These are amazing statistics. You don't very often find a phenomenon that crosses all the usual boundaries.)
The guardian angel encounter figures were "the big shocker" in the report, says Christopher Bader, director of the Baylor survey that covered a range of religious issues, parts of which are being released Thursday in a book titled What Americans Really Believe. (Amazing how those angelic types are the shocking common denominator.)
In the case of angels, however, the question is a little stronger than just belief. Says Bader, "If you ask whether people believe in guardian angels, a lot of people will say, 'sure.' But this is different. It's experiential. It means that lots of Americans are having these lived supernatural experiences." (Maybe it's because the 'non organic sentient beings', we call angels really do exist right along side of us and have the capacity to effect our reality.)
Sociologists may need further research to determine how broadly the data should be interpreted. The Baylor study tested other statements that might indicate a similar belief in the supernatural intruding into everyday personal experience — "I heard the voice of God speaking to me"; and "I received a miraculous physical healing." But far fewer people claimed to have had those experiences. This raises the possibility that guardian angels, which famously support an industry of sentimental accessories, are just so darned attractive that they exist in a charmed belief niche of their own. (Of course, there is another possibility, and that is that they actually exist.)
But other factors may be in play. On one end of the spectrum of American religion are the analytical churches, on both the right and the left theologically and politically, which are primarily concerned with establishing Biblical principles to live by — and are suspicious of any modern-day irruption of the supernatural into religious life. Their miracles all took place in the Bible.
At the opposite end of the spectrum are the more experiential churches, like many African-American denominations and those in the Pentecostal movement, that lay heavy emphasis on the workings of the Holy Spirit, where the supernatural, through gifts like healing, prophesying and speaking in tongues, makes regular visits in the pews. In the middle are sacramental faiths like Roman Catholicism, where the supernatural has a regular place on the altar (after all, the Eucharist is said to be the literal body and blood of Christ) but one that occurs only within the restrictions of very specific ritual.
What's interesting about the Baylor findings on guardian angel experiences is that they cross all boundaries. They have scriptural writ (in Psalm 91 and elsewhere). They are clearly experiential. And guardian angels are a prominent part of Catholic belief that happens to float freely outside of a sacrament. The cross-spectrum legitimacy of the notion of angelic interventions may free Americans to engage in the kind of folk faith that is part of almost any religious system but is not always officially acknowledged. (It may also free Americans to admit angels exist and they are not denominationaly challenged. And more than that, they work with DEMOCRATS as well as republicans.)
Randall Ballmer, chairman of the religion department at New York's Barnard College, says that the Baylor angel figures are one in a periodic series of indications that "Americans live in an enchanted world," and engage in a kind of casual mysticism independent of established religious ritual, doctrine or theology. "There is," he says, a "much broader uncharted range of religious experience among the populace than we expect." Just possibly, Baylor has begun to chart it. (Try this thought on for size: Maybe they really exist, but as of now, the only intellectual framework in which to put them is the religious framework. Science will get there someday, and maybe sooner than later.)
I don't normally post twice in one day, but this article was a must post. This is a truly fascinating finding and I don't think the timing of it's release is an accident. Michael and his friends are getting more and more active all the time. They are a discrete race of super intelligent beings that just happen not to have an organic basis, and not only that, they are the embodiment of unconditional love in light form. The operative word is unconditional love, so of course experiences of them would cross all boundaries.
All the religions of the book claim stories of angelic interaction, even the Koran, and all the descriptions are the same. I've even gone so far as to ask Michael if they weren't the genesis of the events recorded in the books and he laughed and said "One could certainly come to the that understanding --legitimately." He never gives a straight answer, but then any answer a person gets from them has multiple levels of meaning. They don't seem to think in terms of single ideas. Their ideas are onions with layers and layers of meaning.
He once tried to explain this to me by speaking of the information contained in a beam of light. It's not discrete, it's holistic. The information in light is not a series of dot/dashes, it's more a hologram. It bursts on you, and sometimes dealing with the burst in this reality takes a lot of time. For them time doesn't really exist and so their thought processes are not constrained by time, and do not need to be linear.
I admit that this is hard to get my head around, as I type this sentence one letter at a time. If Michael was doing this, the whole thing would just appear--without typos. For them communication is analogous to sending the entirety of the New York Times Web Site and digesting it all at once, where as we would have to take hours if not days, as we broke it down page by page in order to read it. This is why communication with them can be challenging. That is unless you don't want it to be, and it seems a lot of people don't want to get past their en cultured understandings. That's too bad, because they are missing out on what is a truly an enchanting and challenging relationship.
If anyone reading this wants to test the angelic communication realm, all you have to do is sincerely ask. Then start looking for synchronicities. I think I might have mentioned using songs on the radio. That seems to be a favorite form of communicating at this time.
From then on it's all about the fun and from my experience you can go as far as you want with the relationship. The only proviso is that if you want to link your abilities with theirs you better be prepared to make the huge conversion to unconditional love. They're not just here as interfering guardians. They are also our teachers and the lesson is the transforming power of unconditional love. I don't mean just personally transforming, I mean material reality transforming.