The Curious Case of Bro. Edgar Mitchell

by Midnight Freemason Contributor
Robert H. Johnson

In my travels, I meet some amazing Brothers. Men with insane, almost unbelievable stories...except they are real. Recently this was the case when I spent the weekend with a Brother who was great friends with Brother Edgar Mitchel. For those who do not know, Bro. Mitchell was an Apollo Astronaut. His Wiki summary is worth posting below:
Edgar Dean "Ed" Mitchell (September 17, 1930 – February 4, 2016) was a United States Navy officer and aviator, test pilot, aeronautical engineer, ufologist and NASA astronaut. As the Lunar Module Pilot of Apollo 14, he spent nine hours working on the lunar surface in the Fra Mauro Highlands region, making him the sixth person to walk on the Moon. The legacy of his post-NASA scientific work is carried on through the Institute of Noetic Sciences.
It's always a curious thing for me when I see someone of such stature, someone who is an authority, take an active interest in things most people think are a little "out there". What defines, "out there"? Well, for most it's things like, ghosts, UFOs, Metaphysics, and more. A curious position for sure when we consider what is "normal" in religious beliefs the world over...I digress.

I suppose, I am an "out there" kind of person. When I was conversing with my friend over the weekend he regaled me of the tales and stories that Edgar Mitchell had confided in him--that Mitchell had had an out of body experience while riding back to Earth and his visions of the Sacred Samahdi.

It sent my mind reeling with questions, questions I did have answered, but will remain with me due to the sensitive nature of them. What I wanted to drive home with this post was the curious nature of those men who are on top of the world, both literally and figuratively and who believe in things in a different way.

James Irwin was another Apollo Astronaut who had a curious fascination. He was aboard Apollo 15, and his life's work after returning home was to prove and find the literal Noah's Ark. He climbed Mount Ararat several times, and almost died. You can read an article on this HERE.

There are many cases of Astronauts believing in and taking positions which make many do a double take. 

Edgar Mitchell was a bit more scientific in his endeavors. You may have noticed at the end of the Wiki summary, Brother Edgar formed the Institute of Noetic Sciences. If that sounds familiar, you've likely read the book, The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown. 

The word "Noetic" refers to the, "...theory in philosophy, as branch of metaphysical philosophy concerned with the study of mind as well as intellect. There is also a reference to the science of noetics, which covers the field of thinking and knowing, thought and knowledge, as well as mental operations, processes, states, and products through the data of the written word."

I don't know about you, but this sounds an awful lot like the Masonic practices...divesting our hearts and minds...Doing actual internal work on our characters and egos etc. Pretty curious indeed...

The actual Institutes description, which deals with a little more than just the basic description of what "Noetics" is, is as follows:

The Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS) is an American non-profit parapsychological[1] research institute. It was co-founded in 1973 by former astronaut Edgar Mitchell, along with investor Paul N. Temple, and others interested in purported paranormal phenomena,[1] in order to encourage and conduct research on noetic theory and human potentials. 
The Institute conducts research on topics such as spontaneous remission, meditation, consciousness, alternative healing practices, consciousness-based healthcare, spirituality, human potential, psychic abilities, psychokinesis and survival of consciousness after bodily death. The Institute maintains a free database, available on the Internet, with citations to more than 6,500 articles about whether physical and mental health benefits might be connected to meditation and yoga. 
Headquartered outside Petaluma, California, the IONS is situated on a 200-acre (81 ha) campus that includes offices, a research laboratory and a retreat center (originally the campus of World College West). Its current director is Cassandra Vieten. Other researchers associated with it include Dean Radin and Rupert Sheldrake.
I find these things fascinating because I believe in the inseparable union of Science and Religion or Spirituality. I find them to be interdependent on each other. It's the main area of my personal studies. To know that men like Bro. Mitchel had invested the time and money into studying these things sure is a bit reassuring, not that I need it, but it's a small comfort.

Bro, Mitchell died in 2016 and you can read a bit more about him in THIS LINK which is a piece Illustrious Bro. Hodapp penned when that occurred.


RWB, Robert Johnson is the Managing Editor of the Midnight Freemasons blog. He is a Freemason out of the 1st N.E. District of Illinois. He currently serves as the Secretary of Spes Novum Lodge No. 1183 UD. He is a Past Master of Waukegan Lodge 78 and a Past District Deputy Grand Master for the 1st N.E. District of Illinois. Brother Johnson currently produces and hosts weekly Podcasts (internet radio programs) Whence Came You? & Masonic Radio Theatrewhich focus on topics relating to Freemasonry. He is also a co-host of The Masonic Roundtable, a Masonic talk show. He is a husband and father of four, works full time in the executive medical industry. He is the co-author of "It's Business Time - Adapting a Corporate Path for Freemasonry" and is currently working on a book of Masonic essays and one on Occult Anatomy to be released soon.

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