Connection Intensity

From The SpiritWiki

Connection Intensity is one of five Connection Axes which may be used to operationalize and categorize Connection Experience. Connection intensity refers to the level of intensity of a given Connection Event. The intensity of a connection event can range through five discrete levels of intensity, from mild through moderate, intense, transcendent, and Cosmic Consciousness types of experiences.

Connection Axis

Connection Axes > Connection Content, Connection Duration, Connection Intensity, Connection Outcome, Connection Quality

Related LP Terms

Connection Intensity >

Non-LP Related Terms

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According to Lang and Thalbourne, "the intensity of mystical experiences forms a progression that starts with quite general experiences of happiness, followed by enlightenment by a higher power, and ultimately leading to union with the Absolute." [1]

Ralph Waldo Emerson points to the varying intensity of connection experience.

... The character and duration of this enthusiasm vary with the state of the individual, from an ecstasy and trance and prophetic inspiration-which is its rarer appearance -to the faintest glow of virtuous emotion, in which form it warms, like our household fires, all the families and associations of men, and makes society possible. [2]

"...the intensity can range from a few moments of rapture to several hours of shattering psychological experience."[3]

Powerful events are dangerous events: " expands you, and if your body is not really healthy it can just blow your circuits out over and over and over again."[4] See also Flooding.

Timothy Leary recounts a short duration, high-intensity connection experience induced by Dimethyltryptamine. "Last fall a minister and his wife, as part of a courageous and dedicated pursuit of illumination, took a psychedelic biochemical called dimethyltryptamine. This wondrous alkaloid (which closely approximates serotonin, the natural "lubricant" of our higher nervous system) produces the most intense psychedelic effect of any sacramental food or drug. In 25 minutes (about the duration of the average sermon), you are whirled through the energy dance, the cosmic process, at the highest psychedelic speed. The 25 minutes are sensed as lasting for a second and for a billion-year Kalpa. After the session, the minister complained that the experience, although shattering and revelatory, was disappointing because it was "content-free"-so physical, so unfamiliar, so scientific, like being beamed through microscopic panoramas, like being oscillated through cellular functions at radar acceleration."[5]

Taylor and Egeto-Szazbo suggest that Awakening Experiencess range in intensity from low intensity experiences through medium intensity experiences and high-intensity experiences. [6]

Intensity Levels


Mild Déjà vu, Existential Terrors



Types of experience, from least to most intensive, Insights/intuitive glimmers, Peak Experience, Mystical Glimpse, Mystical Visions, Revelations, transcendent experiences, permanent unions.


  1. Lange, Rense, and Michael A. Thalbourne. "The Rasch Scaling of Mystical Experiences: Construct Validity and Correlates of the Mystical Experience Scale (Mes)." The International Journal for the Psychology of Religion 17 2 (2007): 130.
  2. Emerson, Ralph Waldo. “The Over-Soul.” In The Complete Essays and Other Writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson. New York: Modern Library, 1950. p. 269.
  3. Allman, Lorraine S., Olivia de la Rocha, David N. Elkins, and Robert S. Weathers. “Psychotherapists’ Attitudes toward Clients Reporting Mystical Experiences.” Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training 29, no. 4 (Win 1992): 565.
  4. Bender, Courtney. The New Metaphysicals: Spirituality and the American Religious Imagination. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2010. p. 71.
  5. Leary, T. “The Religious Experience: Its Production and Interpretation.” Journal of Psychoactive Drugs 3, no. 1 (1970): 76–86. p. 342
  6. Taylor, Steve, and Krisztina Egeto-Szabo. “Exploring Awakening Experiences: A Study of Awakening Experience in Terms of Their Triggers, Characteristics, Duration and After Effects.” Journal of Transpersonal Psychology 49, no. 1 (January 2017): 45–65. p. 45.