By Summer Bacon
It was 1983, and I was twenty-three years old when my mother suggested we listen to the David Viscott, MD talk radio show upon which Dr. Peebles would be a guest, speaking through Thomas Jacobson. She joyfully announced that Viscott, a prominent American psychologist, was going to interview Thomas, "a man who allows a spirit to come into his body so that it can speak to people."
I was terrified! At that time I considered myself to be "born again"-a "good" Christian - something I had discovered during college in 1981 that might keep me safe from the demons that seemed to follow me everywhere. What my mother was describing was, by my determination, called "possession," and I was not about to give my energy to something that certainly came from Satan.
Nevertheless, my ever-charming, persuasive and open-minded mother dimmed the lights, lit candles, and managed to coax me to the couch where she wrapped me up in a cozy blanket assuring me that nothing bad would happen, but that if it did-"Wouldn't it be an interesting adventure?"
The radio squealed as she tuned it to pick up the station's frequency. I trembled.
Since I do not have actual transcripts of the recorded conversation, I will rely on my memory and perspective of what I heard.
Dr. Viscott calmly introduced Thomas who sounded so young, shy and normal when he spoke that I immediately felt my heart open wide to this courageous man. Dr. Viscott shared that he, himself, was interested in metaphysical phenomenon. He said that he was a healthy skeptic who decided to openly explore trance channeling on his radio program. He wanted to watch as Thomas went into trance, that he might study the channeling process from a scientific perspective. Clearly the assumption was that Thomas probably suffered from some sort of psychological delusions. I felt strangely comforted by this thought.
"Oh, this is a psychological study, not a study of the occult," I convinced myself, feeling greatly relieved. The procedure would be as follows: Thomas would go into trance, and anyone who wanted to ask the so-called "spirit" Dr. Peebles a question, could call the radio station. Silly, I thought. Plain silly.
The radio went silent as Thomas went into trance. I held my breath. My eyes widened as the seconds passed. The airwaves seemed to transmit the very large and loving energy of the spirit. Suddenly, this didn't feel like a joke anymore. There was an audible gasp as the spirit entered Thomas's body, and then a magnificent voice boomed through the speaker.
"God bless you! Dr. Peebles here! It is a joy and a blessing when man and spirit join together in search of the greater truths and awareness!"
I was immediately entranced. The room felt light, peaceful and serene. My mother and I listened intently, totally mesmerized for more than half an hour. Dr. Peebles answered each question from Dr. Viscott and his listeners' with astonishing clarity, accuracy, and unwavering and unconditional love. I settled deep into the couch, feeling safe and warm. I knew in my heart that God approved of this. There was no Satan here.
The session concluded with Thomas returning to his body with a loud groan. Dr. Viscott bubbled with enthusiasm. He vulnerably admitted to his listening audience that he had seen a puff of blue smoke above Thomas' head as Thomas went into trance. He said that he could not explain what had happened in scientific terms, but that the experience was so beautiful and loving, who cared anyway? The trance process was clearly a phenomenon to explore.
A phenomenon, indeed!
Here was this Dr. Peebles-not Archangel Michael, or Jesus, or aliens, or the usual cast of spiritual characters that seemed to pop through modern day channels. It was just Dr. Peebles: a really nice, unpretentious guy who happened to live a very fulfilling life on the earth. This was the spirit for me!
This was just the beginning of putting together the pieces to the puzzle of my life: i.e., the reasons why I heard and felt the things that go bump in the night; why I had so many accurate psychic impressions (often dreaming about the next day's news events the night before they occurred); and why, from the age of 22 months old I knew I was on earth to find out what this "truth" thing is about once and for all.
It was several years later before I had an actual session with Dr. Peebles, and the thing that profoundly impacted me more than the session itself was...Thomas.
Thomas and his three dogs met me at the door of his Santa Monica home. He was a large man with kind eyes and an adorable boyish grin. For some reason I had expected a short, lithe man with a beard. I thought he would be wearing Birkenstocks. He was clean-shaven, and wore tennis shoes. I expected the smell of tofu and garlic to permeate the house, lightly covered by the scent of sandalwood incense. There was none of this. Thomas turned off his country music and pointed the way to a small room, saying with a knowing giggle, "You ready for this?"
There were two folding chairs set up and facing each other in the tiny office. Thomas sat down on one and gestured to other. I sat down on the edge of the seat. He didn't fill me in much on what was going to occur. "Ready?" he asked with a grin. I nodded. He closed his eyes and he softly spoke, "I call upon the Spirit of Light and Love, opening myself to receiving Light, Inspiration and Tru..." his head dropped back, and it seemed like for a couple minutes he did not breathe at all. I perched on the edge of my seat, elbows on my knees, and I watched his face intently. I was seriously concerned because, well, he looked...well...dead. After a considerable amount of time his body finally jerked forward, as if he'd been punched in the stomach. There was a huge groan, and the loud piercing voice of Dr. Peebles came through.
"G-aw-aw-d bless you, Dr. Peebles here! It is a joy and blessing when man and spirit join together in search of the greater truths and awareness!"
Without further ado, and as if he had read my thoughts and diaries, Dr. Peebles proceeded to tell me how I would be doing spiritual work that would be touching lives internationally. He spoke of visions exactly like those that I'd had since I was a very little girl. I could not fathom how this would ever come to fruition, but in my heart, even as young as five years old, I knew that these things would one day come true. Now, here was Dr. Peebles speaking my truth, taking that which I knew in my gut and my heart, and putting words to my visions in an oh so eloquent way. It was more than my heart could take, and the tears welled up and poured from eyes. He continued to speak over my audible sobbing, ending his commentary with, "And, would you understand? And, would you have questions or comments?"
I couldn't speak at all. Through my heaving sobs I finally squeaked, "I'm sorry, Dr. Peebles," to which he responded, "God bless you, indeed, my dear. It's okay. Your tears show that you care!" His kind words and acknowledgement only prompted even more tears.
Thomas' vulnerability in essentially dropping dead on my behalf made a lasting impression on my life.
And then, there was his class, "Journey to the Heart," which was all about channeling life itself. Thomas was a profound and empowering teacher. I watched as each classmate went through an incredible transformation and became their authentic self, no longer afraid of touching and being touched by the world. I, myself, went from being a shy, reclusive young girl, trying to "fit" the world, to discovering that I "fit" just the way I was...and that meant learning to fully embrace my mystical self.
During an exercise called "That's True, Too," which I have subsequently used in teaching some of my own classes, Thomas had us writing down reasons why anything and everything is true. "Write down five reasons why you would like for it to be winter all of the time," he would say. And then he said, "Write down five reasons why you will become the greatest channel to walk the earth."
"I can't think of one reason," I retorted, horrified by the thought that I would ever be able to match the mystical mastery of Thomas.
Thomas lovingly glared at me, "Summer, I want you to write down ten reasons."
And yet another great teaching of his: we were not allowed to say "One" as a substitute for "I" in a sentence, such as in, "When one thinks about it, we are all just seeking love." We were stopped and told to say "I" instead, i.e., "When I think about it, we are all just seeking love." This necessarily changed the energy of our thought, and forced our ownership of it.
Which brings me to the reason for writing this article.
Those of you who know and love Dr. Peebles as I do, will understand when I say how often we manage to quote him in our discussions about life, prefaces great thoughts with, "Dr. Peebles says..."
However, Dr. Peebles has often said, "If you believe our words, embrace them as your own, and share them from your own heart. We have no need to be given credit for them."
Now, many years later, after taking this trip down memory lane, remembering Thomas' teachings, and my growth as a result, I truly understand what Dr. Peebles said. We do not need to justify the truth of a statement by citing its source. If it is true for us, then it is true. If someone else does not embrace it, that is their truth.
No longer is life about having to fit the world, or making the world fit, but it becomes more of a dance with many partners, some with whom you are in sync, and some with whom you are stepping on each other's toes. It's no longer about right or wrong, it just is.
During our workshop, "A Celebration of Life: The Agony and the Ecstasy," these are the kinds of teachings that Thomas and I will offer; the kinds that will put the Three Principles of loving allowance, increased communication, and self responsibility into motion in your life with ease and clarity, in ways that will be ultimately empowering and very freeing.
I do not doubt that you will walk away from this workshop feeling greater love for yourself, and for people you never dreamed you could love; embracing life no matter what it throws your way, even in moments that may feel agonizing. You will find purpose and meaning in all things, all relationships, all occurrences, even the ones that don't always feel good. Wouldn't it feel wonderful to feel that free, knowing that there is no situation that you can't handle or understand?