The Edgar Cayce Legacy Has Surprises for the Soul*


Henry Reed

Note: What is now the scripted material of the Intuitive Heart Discovery Group Process (see the manual, Sharing the Intuitive Heart) started out as two week long conferences held at Edgar Cayce's A.R.E. in Virginia Beach. Conferees requested a way to practice at home with their friends what they learned "at the beach!" A.R.E. commissioned Henry Reed to create a twelve week workbook for use by Edgar Cayce Study Groups. It was called, "Psychic is of the Soul.” A.R.E. distributed the material to interested groups, Henry gave the leader a brief explanation of the overall purpose and structure of the materials, and let them go at it. It was very pleasing to see how much they could gain from these exercises with no "expert leader.” However, some of the questions and comments that surfaced suggested that although a group of untrained folks can read this material aloud to each other, try to exercises, and get a lot from them, a trained leader can help the folks realize, at a more conscious level, just what they have learned and its implications. Although designed as a leaderless, self-help group, it would actually go farther if it were promoted as something a teacher or leader could offer to their clients, friends, or colleagues. When Henry became director of the Edgar Cayce Institute for Intuitive Studies, he began to revise the material under the new title, The Intuitive Heart Discovery Process. Many "teachers” have been "certified" since that time. Henry has bequeathed to Atlantic University the rights to the Intuitive Heart material while he continues to locate, train and certify "teachers" and "providers" of the Intuitive Heart Discover Process as they demonstrate their ability to translate their experience and undertanding into helping others discover their Intuitivve Heart. You can go to to see a list of currently active Intuitive Heart teachers/providers.


 When Edgar Cayce said that “psychic is of the soul,” he imagined that our getting in touch with the psychic part of ourselves would have us welcoming back our soul into awareness! That’s what seems to happen at A.R.E.’s longest running headquarters conference, “The Edgar Cayce Legacy.” What else can explain why people pay to return to this same conference and repeat it year after year? Mr. Cayce is known to have predicted that the “psychic” would draw people to the work, but it would be the “spirituality” that would keep them coming. I believe the secret of the success of the Edgar Cayce Legacy conference is that we’ve found the spirituality in the psychic and it leads to a grand community of souls—a type of get together not typically imagined but highly rewarding.

          It wasn’t always so. A.R.E. conference audiences love it when I tell the story of how Edgar Cayce’s organization transformed itself from being almost phobic about other psychics to embracing a multi-dimensional psychic training program that’s the best anywhere. Recently, I published an invited essay in the peer-reviewed journal ReVision: A Journal of Consciousness and Transformation describing how I used Edgar Cayce’s ideas about laboratory ESP research to develop some of the most dramatic psychic experiments currently pursued. I encourage you to read the technical details online (a reprint of the professional article is at, while an easier to download version is at, but here I’ll share enough to give a better idea of how the Legacy conference has made the necessary psychic training breakthrough to match Edgar Cayce’s idealism and how that affects what people gain from the conference training today.

          Edgar Cayce first came into my life in 1968 to introduce me to my dreams as a graduate student at U.C.L.A. My first year as an assistant professor of psychology at Princeton University in 1970 found me teaching, thanks to Mr. Cayce, the first course ever taught on learning to remember dreams. A synchronistic event had me meet in 1971 Charles Thomas Cayce at the Menninger Foundation in Topeka Kansas. We discovered that his grandfather and I had in common a radical notion of what human research into spirituality could look like.

           In 1972 I began commuting from New Jersey to help create a research program at A.R.E. At that time, interest in psychedelics was driving many young people to A.R.E., to explore the unconscious in a safer manner—Harmon Bro’s book High Play was a big seller. Interest in psychic experiences was high, but paradoxically downplayed at A.R.E. headquarters.

          As I’ve explained to more recent audiences bewildered by this historical fact, it was as if there was a big sign on top of the old hospital building, “Come in here and become psychic like Edgar Cayce!” However, once you got into the building and began asking around where you could go to become psychic, you’d be met by the smiling voice that said, “you don’t really want to be psychic, it is spiritual that you want to become!” The distinction Mr. Cayce made between the psychic—aka “Uranus,” and the spiritual—aka “Neptune,” was strongly emphasized.

           I think the major concern at the time was that folks might get too hung up on being psychic, get kind of an ego boost that could be counter-productive. I remember Charles Thomas telling me that he was pleased that most folks could not score well on the “ESP machine” kept in the lobby for many years, because he believed that this sort of grounding might pop some of the false balloons of psychic egos! I heard more about the dangers of developing psychically than I heard of any of the benefits beyond celebrity, and that was considered one of its worst aspects. At a deeper level, we were dealing with the critical challenge that the Cayce material functions at the highest level of idealism. His idealism requires a lot of creativity and evolution of consciousness to derive a training program that is worthy of the overall mission of A.R.E.

The breakthrough came with Mark Thurston’s practical, down to earth creativity. He proposed that the purpose of psychic development is for spiritual guidance. He also noted Cayce’s admonition that it is always wise to consult and correlate at least two sources of psychic information—never just one—and then to develop a plan to apply or test out what the various sources of information had in common.

          With those premises, we designed a psychic development conference that was conducted as a research activity. Participants at this conference received an astrological reading, a dream interpretation, some group work, as well as coaching in meditation for decision making, and a psychic reading. By receiving so many sources of guidance, both from others and from themselves, the reading from the psychic occurred in a larger context of guidance. Participants analyzed and rated the various sources as to which one helped most with regard to various concerns.

          The results indicated that the astrology was favored for vocational questions, the psychic reading favored for interpersonal questions, and dreams for past life questions. The conference was a big success, folks were very happy with what they learned, and ARE discovered they could have live psychic readings going on at headquarters and nothing caught on fire. That was the beginning and I’ll always be thankful to Mark for his insightful approach to breaking open this important deadlock so that ARE could begin to take its place among those institutions promoting the reality of psychic phenomena. The next step was the creation of what would become the Edgar Cayce Legacy conference.

          Hugh Lynn Cayce made an important contribution to the creation of that program by noticing and singling out Carol Ann Liaros as someone of special talent. He arranged for her to serve as a subject in several ongoing research projects involving testing psychics. In several books published in the late 1960s and early 1970s (such as Superlearning, by By Sheila Ostrander and Lynn Schroeder) one can find mention of her name and how well she functioned in these experiments. When she speaks from the podium of her ninety plus per cent accuracy, such statements are based upon results reported to her in these experiments. Besides having experience in the scientific testing of psychics, Carol Ann also developed an intense curiosity about her process, how she “gets the information.” Keeping a journal record of her observations led to insights that shapes her unique way of training people to recognize their psychic experiences and to use them. By the time ARE had begun our new program, The Edgar Cayce Legacy, Carol Ann had already accumulated a substantial amount of experience conducing psychic training programs at her home in Buffalo, New York. She was a quite popular and well-seasoned professional psychic and psychic trainer by the time we started our work together in the early 1990s.

          Chosen to complement Carol Ann, I had been developing a unique process in dreaming that allowed most everyone to experience a psychic dream, as Mark Thurston had since confirmed in his doctoral dissertation. This special dream exercise came out of work with children at ARE camp and was also aided by the work of Robert Van de Castle, a professor at the University of Virginia, who was a documented psychic dreamer. In this experiment—actually a spiritual healing exercise--a group of people donate their dreams to help a stranger in distress concerning an unrevealed issue. The “Dream Helper Ceremony,” as we call it, provided the first instance of a psychic exercise that expressed the spiritual idealism of Edgar Cayce, making it both safe and productive for anyone to participate.

          Not only does this exercise provide a spiritually useful psychic training exercise, it also reaffirms Mr. Cayce’s favoring the small group as the ideal context for psychic development. This dream experiment spawned a unique methodology, now called the Intuitive Heart Discovery Process. The training exercises that resulted have each been described in professional peer reviewed journals—another unique bit of “credentials” for our conference syllabus. These exercises provide participants with practical demonstrations of Cayce’s dictum, “it’s all within.”



          It’s been more than fifteen years now that the two of us, sometimes called the “odd couple,” have been teaching the Edgar Cayce [note: since this essay was originally published, A.R.E. decided to conclude this program to allow for the next stage of their outreach on psychic development to evolve; our final, combined performance was October, 2011]. On stage, Carol Ann comes across as the scientific type, as she shares her broad knowledge of the field, combined with her personal professional experience. Her exercises come from the ESP laboratories and her professional psychic work. On the other hand, I, the trained scientist, comes across more like the mystic, artist, or intuitive. My exercises are the “reality games” that I’ve invented from my experiences. Carol Ann serves up the best of the traditional parapsychological approaches to psychic development and its understanding. Carol Ann has made a major contribution to the acceptance of psychic functioning by emphasizing the constructive applications of psychic abilities, such as her teaching remote viewing to blind children to help them navigate their environment. I represent the “transpersonal” dimension of the psychic. I’m into “oneness” and creative states of consciousness, and explore communication with plants and animals as much as with people. I’ve applied in these training exercises Mr. Cayce’s suggestions regarding how aesthetic and meditative approaches can stimulate the most valuable inspirations and profound intuitions.

          Part of those insights achieved at our Legacy conferences come from professional psychics we’ve hired to provide readings for the participants—another special feature of our Legacy conference that has no match elsewhere. The selection of these psychics represents another breakthrough with regards to A.R.E.’s heritage of doing research with such talented individuals.

          Every few years, Carol Ann and I “audition” a large list of professional psychics whom A.R.E. members have nominated as being particularly helpful. It’s worth knowing how we conduct these auditions, because it grounds our vision of service through psychic information. Rather than “test” these folks to determine if they are “really psychic,” we ask them to give a reading to me and to Carol Ann regarding personal questions of genuine need. Following Cayce’s admonition that the best information comes when the need is real, Carol Ann and I each developed a set of meaningful personal questions concerning actual issues we were facing in our lives.

          To broaden the contexts for our evaluation of the psychics’ work, Carol Ann and I set up our readings differently. In the case of Carol Ann, she and the psychic would converse over the telephone, and Carol Ann would ask her standard questions. After the psychic answered the questions, the conversation might go on a bit more to follow up on certain things. Carol Ann got a sense of the person’s interactive style as well as how helpful that person was concerning Carol Ann’s questions. In my case, I mailed my questions, each sealed in an envelope. The psychic was to respond to each question first without opening the envelope. Then, after responding, they were to open the envelope, read the question, and then comment upon their answer, perhaps giving more details. This procedure allowed me to determine if they could answer my questions without knowing them (one characteristic of a good psychic is that they often “anticipate” your questions). Also, by noting what they said after they read the question, it was easy to determine if they continued on in an intuitive manner, or if they shifted to sharing some of their conscious opinions. I also would rate the person for the degree of helpfulness in their reading.

          When we were done, usually auditioning between 15 and 30 psychics with the same set of questions, we each had a good sample of readings. In such a standardized, comparative context, it was clear that we could separate those psychics who were really helpful from those who were only so-so. We each rated the readings on a 10 point scale. When we compared our ratings, we found that we were in almost perfect agreement as to which ones should get a score of 9 or 10. Those were the psychics who have been invited to participate in our Legacy program.

          From the point of view of finding good psychics, I think our procedure demonstrated an important Cayce principle, that of not settling for simply being good, but being good for something. Many skeptics find that when they test a psychic for ESP, the test fails. What we did was not test for ESP, but test for helpfulness (whether via ESP or other means) and our results indicated that we could easily agree on who were the helpful psychics. In a lengthy article appearing in First for Women, the reporter noted our innovation with regard to choosing psychics and wanted folks to know that using recommendations from others was probably the best route. We were very pleased to find that our novel method for selecting psychics had such practical implications. It also represented an important breakthrough in the application of Cayce’s idealism in regards to researching psychics, and adds yet another dimension of value to our Legacy program. The professional psychics serve both as role models and guidance counselors as they demonstrate giving a reading to the participants. Receiving readings from two different psychics, the participant also has the learning experience of correlating the two sources of information, as Mr. Cayce advised.

          Given the multi-dimensional opportunities provided by the Edgar Cayce Legacy, what is the impact upon the participants? At the beginning of this account, I mentioned that many folks return to this conference year after year at their own expense to share in the experience and lend their perspective that comes from applying these training exercises in their lives. I’m referring to the “Wayshowers,” a growing group of “graduates” of our three-part training program (The Edgar Cayce Legacy conference, The Intuitive Imagination conference, and The Psychic Intensive seminar). These folks are not “psychic” in the professional sense. Instead, their claim to fame is that they’ve actually used the training to make their lives better. In the application of the training, these folks became aware that they were learning to operate together in an intuitive fashion, creating a community of souls helping one another evolve spiritually.

           I look forward to reading in this magazine [Venture Inward] their perspective on all that is gained from the Legacy conference to which they have returned so many times. One of the “in jokes,” shared by most everyone who has attended a Legacy conference, is that to the outside world, it is assumed that folks at the conference are learning how to become psychics and give readings, whereas what is actually going on is that through the medium of psychic awareness and intuition, there’s a “whole lot of bonding going on!” That refrain takes on added significance when today, Lynne McTaggert, the author who made such a splash with The Intention Experiment, she has come out with a new book, The Bond, which describes the many different dimensions on which all of creation is interconnected.

           When people begin to interact, not at the verbal and sensory level, but at the intuitive and spiritual level, as they do at the Legacy conference, there are many unforeseen discoveries. For one thing, the universal human needs to be seen, to be heard, to be validated, and especially to be recognized at a soul level, are met at the Legacy conference to a degree far beyond expectations. As Edgar Cayce indicates, the Creator has these same needs, and desires our companionship to meet those needs.

          Although some of our intuitive training provides guidance to help us get ahead in the world, much of it provides guidance for how to get into harmony with the world. Although most folks have their curiosity satisfied at our conferences about whether or not they can have a “psychic experience,” the more powerful result is a deepening of essential self-trust that provides a tangible basis for feeling oneself to be an individual yet one with All. It is a profound result, one that is better shared and validated among the participants themselves, one of those “you gotta be there” type of experiences.

          The Edgar Cayce Legacy is a celebration of the directly shared experience of our oneness with all life. Loving one another as oneself is a snap when you actually experience the other person as yourself. All the talk and writing about spirituality, about oneness, and about our souls’ mission, etc, is but so much verbiage, whereas through intuitive and psychic awareness, participants have the shared experience of these ideas, and learn how to interact and help one another at a soul level. It is through such application of intuitive awareness that we reach the true goals that Edgar Cayce found the Creator had in mind for us.

          *An article written for Venture Inward magazine that appeared in the Venture Inward Newsletter, Winter, 2011


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