Jane Roberts (1929-1984) was an American author, poet and psychic. She is best known as a trance medium who
"channeled" an "entity" named Seth. The publication of the Seth texts established her as one of the preeminent figures in the
world of paranormal phenomena. She was also an author of short stories, novels, children's literature, and metaphysical texts
unrelated to Seth, including The Afterdeath Journal of an American Philosopher, The Education of Oversoul Seven and
Adventures in Consciousness.
The Seth Material
Jane Roberts was born in Saratoga Springs, New York, where she attended Skidmore College.
In late 1963, Jane Roberts and her husband, Robert Butts, experimented with a Ouija board as part of Roberts' research for a
book on ESP. According to Jane and Robert, on December 2, 1963 they began to receive coherent messages from a
personality who eventually identified himself as Seth. Within weeks, Jane began to hear the messages in her head and to dictate
them, and the use of the Ouija board was eventually abandoned. For 21 years, until Janes' death in 1984 (with a one-year
hiatus due to her final illness) Jane held regular sessions in which she went into a trance and channeled messages from the
Seth personality. Robert served as stenographer, taking the messages down in homemade shorthand, although some sessions
were recorded. These messages from Seth, consisting mostly of monologues on a wide variety of topics, are collectively known
as the "Seth Material".
The Material through 1969 was published in summary form in The Seth Material, which was written by Jane Roberts with
substantial excerpts from Seth. Beginning with the 511th session in January, 1970, Seth began to dictate his own books through
Roberts. This series of "Seth books" eventually totalled nine volumes, although the last two books appear to be incomplete due
to Janes' illness. The list of titles includes Seth Speaks; The Nature of Personal Reality; The Nature of the Psyche, Its Human
Expression; The Individual and the Nature of Mass Events; The Unknown Reality; and Dreams, Evolution and Value Fulfillment.
Robert contributed notes and comments to all the Seth books, and thus he was a co-author on all of them.
Seth described himself as an "energy personality essence no longer focused in physical form" who was independent of Janes'
subconscious, although Jane herself expressed skepticism as to Seth's origins. Seth said that he had completed his earthly
reincarnations and that he was speaking from an adjacent plane of existence. He described himself as an educator whose task
was to impart the Material to the current generation of human beings. Unlike the tortured syntax of the Edgar Cayce readings,
the Material is marked by modern diction and general lucidity. The Material discusses the nature of physical reality, the origins of
the universe, the theory of evolution, the Christ story, the nature of God, and the purpose of life, among other subjects. With the
exception of a weekly ESP class in which Seth spoke to class members, Jane gave few readings to the public and was mostly
focused on publishing the Material in printed form.
Seth contended that time and space are illusions and that both the past and future coexist with the present; that each person
lives many lives simultaneously, rather than consecutively; and that each person creates his own circumstances and
experiences within the shared earthly environment (you create your own reality). In an argument reminiscent of the "many worlds
hypothesis", Seth said there are multiple realities, each as valid as any of the others.
Seth said that there is a God (whom he referred to as "All That Is"), that God is composed of self-replicating and inexhaustible
mental energy, and that God contains all of Creation within it. God is therefore a gestalt of all life, and it can be said that only
one being exists in the universe, as in Pantheism. Seth said that the mental energy of God permeates all of existence and is the
building material for all beings and things. Thus, according to Seth, inanimate matter has life and consciousness.
According to Seth, at the time of Christ, the Christ entity reincarnated as three individuals -- John the Baptist, Jesus of Nazareth, and an individual
named Paul or Saul of Tarsus -- and each was aware of his role in founding a new religion. Seth said that Jesus was not crucified; rather, a
deluded surrogate was substituted in his place, and it was this surrogate that Judas supposedly betrayed. Seth said that the crucifixion of Jesus
did occur, but it was a shared psychic event, not a physical event.
According to Seth, Paul/Saul will reincarnate in the 21st century to correct mistakes that he made that set Christianity on the wrong course, and a
new period of spiritual awareness will ensue. He will not identify himself as Christ, and some will view him as the anti-Christ since his appearance
will hasten the end of Christianity. Seth said that Paul/Saul will be known as a psychic, that he will strive "to straighten out Christianity, which will be
in shambles at the time of His arrival", and that he will form "a new system of thought when the world is sorely in need of one". All these events will
be completed by the year 2075.
Jane Roberts died in 1984 at the age of 55 after a long battle with what appeared to be an auto-immune disease. Since Seth asserted that each
individual "creates his own reality", Janes' illness and premature death are considered by some to cast doubt on the validity of Seth's teachings,
the assumption being that Jane, with Seth's help, should not have created a painful death for herself. However, Seth repeatedly said that he
existed independently of Jane and did not control the course of her life.
In 1996, sessions 1 through 510 (the "early sessions" which preceded the dictation of the Seth books) were published posthumously by Robert in
nine volumes, along with six volumes of previously unpublished personal messages which accompanied the later sessions. Jane and Roberts'
manuscripts, notes and recordings were donated to the Yale Library. Robert Butts currently lives in Sayre, Pennsylvania.
Jane Roberts wrote a number of books not dictated by Seth, which discuss the same ideas and how they affected her life. These are, among
others, Adventures in Consciousness, Psychic Politics, The God of Jane, The Education of Oversoul Seven, The Further Education of Oversoul
Seven, and Oversoul Seven and the Museum of Time.
In addition she wrote poetry, short stories and novels.
Quotations from Seth
"Nothing exists - neither rock, mineral, plant, animal or air - that is not filled with consciousness of its own kind. So you stand amid a constant vital
commotion, a gestalt of aware energy, and you are yourselves physically composed of conscious cells that carry within themselves the realization
of their own identity, that cooperate willingly to form the corporeal structure that is your physical body", Seth/Jane Roberts.
"You create your reality according to your beliefs and expectations, therefore you should examine these carefully. If you do not like some aspect
of your world, then examine your own expectations", Seth/Jane Roberts
"Do not personally give any more conscious consideration"..."to events that you do not want to happen. Any such concentration, to whatever
degree, ties you in with those probabilities, so concentrate upon what you want...", Seth's 891st session.
"...the true brotherhood of man can only be achieved by allowing the freedom of thought, under the banner of cooperation."---Seth, "Unknown
"Each mental act is a reality for which you are responsible." ---Seth
Quotations from Jane Roberts, not dictated by Seth
"What we need is a whole new myth of man and his beginnings, one that leapfrogs local gods and places God inside his creatures, within creation.
We need a god as blessed or flawed as its creations, a whole new cosmology giving birth to a God that is male and female, Jew, Arab, American,
Chinese, Indian; that is within each individual alike; that is not parochial and not man's alone; a god that is within stones and stars; a god-goddess
big enough to be personified as a Buddha, Christ, Isis, Athena, Muhammed-animal god, insect god, tree god; each seen as a local symbol
standing for an unexplainable reality that is too super-real to fit our definitions. We need a new myth, imaginative and creative enough to leap
above our puny facts. What boldness, to create a new race of the gods, glorifying individuality, seeing each as a unique personification-not sterile
righteous lords sending down condemnations and handing out impossible edicts, but gods saying "Life is good. That's why we're alive, and alive in
you!" We need father, mother, grandfather, grandmother gods, niece and nephew gods, aunt and uncle gods- boisterous joyful divine families,
mating among themselves and with us, singing of the beauty of the lovebed, appreciating the moments formed like solitary jewels from the vast
necklace of infinity... The Book of the Gods- I'd like to write that, and The Book of the Universe, in which people-gods or god-people rise from
nonphysical to physical life because they want to, because they dreamed in their solitary godhoods of green grasses and soft flesh and yearned
to be born as men and women; flinging their godness into bodies joyfully, recklessly, come what may. And maybe, in between lives, they wander
on the shores of inner rivers, planning their "future" lives with great excitement, creating them as a writer does his book, plotting crises and
achievements, challenges and glories-then, once on earth again, changing the stories, making surprise endings, each character alive, remaking
the plot; with each life forming a new dimension of actuality, providing greater knowledge of honor and love, and a new marriage of the soul with
the seasons. For if the gods didn't love the evenings and the dawns, why would their creatures?" Jane Roberts, Psychic Politics
(May 8, 1929 - Sept. 5, 1984)
YOU CREATE YOUR OWN REALITY
Seth dictated books by Jane Roberts (in order of original publication)
Seth Speaks: The Eternal Validity of the Soul
The Nature of Personal Reality
The Unknown Reality, Vol. 1
The UnknownReality, Vol. 2
The Nature of the Psyche: Its Human Expression
The Individual and the Nature of Mass Events
Dreams, Evolution,and Value Fulfillment, Vol. 1
Dreams, Evolution, and Value Fulfillment, Vol. 2
The Magical Approach: Seth Speaks About the Art of Creative Living
The Way Toward Health
The Early Sessions: Book 1 of the Seth Material
The Early Sessions: Book 2 of the Seth Material
The Early Sessions: Book 3 of the Seth Material
The Early Sessions: Book 4 of the Seth Material
The Early Sessions: Book 5 of the Seth Material
The Early Sessions: Book 6 of the Seth Material
The Early Sessions: Book 7 of the Seth Material
The Early Sessions: Book 8 of the Seth Material
The Early Sessions: Book 9 of the Seth Material
The Personal Sessions: Book 1 of the Deleted Seth Material
The Personal Sessions: Book 2 of the Deleted Seth Material
The Personal Sessions: Book 3 of the Deleted Seth Material
The Personal Sessions: Book 4 of the Deleted Seth Material
The Personal Sessions: Book 5 of the Deleted Seth Material
The Personal Sessions: Book 6 of the Deleted Seth Material
The Personal Sessions: Book 7 of the Deleted Seth Material
Seth-related books by Jane Roberts (in order of original publication)
How to Develop Your ESP Power: The First Published Encounter With Seth
The Seth Material
The Oversoul Seven Trilogy (originally published as three separate books).
Adventures in Consciousness: An Introduction to Aspect Psychology
Dialogues of the Soul and Mortal Self in Time
Psychic Politics (An Aspect Psychology Book)
The World View of Paul Cézanne: A Psychic Interpretation
The Afterdeath Journal of an American Philosopher: The World View of William James
Emirs Education in the Proper Use of Magical Powers
The God of Jane: A Psychic Manifesto (An Aspect Psychology Book)
If We Live Again, or, Public Magic and Private Love
Seth, Dreams and Projections of Consciousness
A Seth Reader The World View of Rembrandt
Seth-related books by Susan M. Watkins (in order of original publication)
Conversations with Seth: The Story of Jane Roberts ESP Class
Speaking of Jane Roberts: Remembering the Author of the Seth Material