Hasan “Sonsuz” Çeliktaş:
Dear Cem, you were in my beloved and beautiful city of Izmir recently. We went to the ancient site of Teos in Seferihisar together. We sat inside the holy room of the Dionysus Temple and meditated. We had visions at that moment, and when we stood up, I felt dizzy. You told me, “Dionysus is a special god that rules the states of consciousness.” Let’s start from this point. Now, it’s your turn.

Cem Şen:
Yes, Dionysus is one of my most special gods for a few reasons. Firstly, his identification mark is the tree creeper, which represents death and rebirth. This symbolizes achieving immortality. Secondly, he rules altered states of consciousness, so he is linked to wine because of this characteristic. Of course, wine is the symbol for altered states of consciousness. As my job is to deal with these states of consciousness, you should not be surprised to hear that Dionysus is important to me. We could say that reality equals the states of consciousness. Those on the journey of spiritualism know that all dimensions, including heaven and hell, are the states of consciousness. In other words, the states of consciousness are the doors to different dimensions. So, we could conclude that Dionysus rules the entrance doors of the other dimensions.

Hasan “Sonsuz” Çeliktaş:
I was just thinking about shifting to another subject and preparing a question, but now I am being coerced by something, and it’s saying, “No! Just continue on this subject.” Perhaps Dionysus came into action when we called his name. I don’t know. Let’s salute him and continue.

Cem Şen:
Very well. Dionysus is a god that died and rose again. He is known by other names in the Middle East and northern Europe. One of these is Tammuz. In fact, the story of Christ is also comparable to that of Dionysus, and it is another name for Dionysus, the dying and resurging God. He is related with the month of July (the Turkish name “Temmuz,” which means July, comes from that name, and this interview took place on July 27, 2012) and symbolized by the sign of Cancer. So, I’m not surprised when you say that something poked you to continue with this subject. This could be the voice of the God, and I could be applauded by the Pagans because of this declaration.

This dying and resurging God has a very important feature: He tells us it’s possible to be reborn after death and reach immortality. It’s possible to ascend to the level of the gods as a human being. Of course, these deities are not the Almighty Creator.

On the other hand, in some cultures, the Almighty Creator is the derivative of ancient tribal gods. These gods were thought to be the strongest among them. When the tribes enlarged and conquered nations, the tribal gods also gained power. In the end, many tribal gods were named as the Almighty Creator.

So, we should keep in mind that many gods called the Almighty God were once the gods of the tribes in ancient times. When we look at the traces of the Almighty God, we come across the ordinary tribal gods in the Fertile Crescent, Northern Africa, and the Arabian Peninsula.

Of course, this does not mean we don’t see the definition of the Almighty God in other regions and in other parts of the world. Of course we do. Brahman is an example of this. I mean that the idea of a single absolute god comes from the gods of the ancient local tribes.

This reveals a truth: The gods need men. The gods give power to men and the men praise the gods, giving them power by worshiping.

For that reason, the gods propagate to be elected as the only god by the nations, similar to the propaganda of politicians, and they make some commitments. The main difference between the contemporary politicians and the ancient gods is the gods always keep their promises.

Hasan “Sonsuz” Çeliktaş:
Hold on, Cem. What do you mean by saying gods? Are these the gods and the goddesses from the myths? You talk as if these gods are alive and in contact with us. How does this take place?  I don’t understand? For example, we just talked about Dionysus, and I felt as if he talked to me. Does Dionysus really exist in another dimension? And if he exists, what about the others? Are they creatures like us? Or is it a state of consciousness? To be honest, I really don’t get it.

Cem Şen:
Yes, schizophrenia and the states of consciousness can be mixed up here. First of all, before proceeding, let me give a warning. The things I will mention now can only be meaningful if they are told by a levelheaded person who can evaluate reality correctly and live in harmony with that reality.

If a person who believes in and mentions these things does not evaluate reality correctly, then they could be hallucinations or schizophrenia. You know me, and you also know I believe that many people who claim to be on the spiritual path are at the edge of a deep psychosis or neurosis.

So, you’re the only one who can appreciate my words when I tell you that the things I’ll talk about are not based on simple beliefs.

Now, let’s answer your question. Yes, these entities we call gods really exist. Yes, they live in different dimensions. Most of them exist in the dimensions beyond the fifth dimension (the human dimension) of the 31 levels of existence.

Except for the last few ones, most of these dimensions have a physical existence. As the dimensions ascend, the physical existence evolves of course. The final dimensions are not physical ones.

If we mention the Almighty Creator, this existence remains beyond the 31st dimension. The entities we call gods in the lower dimensions are bad ones because of their ignorance. Of course, “bad” here has a relative meaning.

I say relative because if one of these gods gave you strength, this may be good for you, but if you are loyal to that god only because he is good to you, we should discuss if this is good or bad.

If man, carrying the light of the Almighty Creator, looks for the power and mercy of a higher power to reach the light, and if he needs the benevolence of the gods, then he is similar to a man who has stacks of gold at home but prays to find a piece of bread on the streets.

Hasan “Sonsuz” Çeliktaş:
You mean that men bargain with the gods? Something like: “I will praise you, and you will give me this and that.” This knowledge may be funny to the Western world, but as far as I know, it’s normal for the Eastern cultures. When we were in Egypt, you told me, “There is a dead culture here, but it’s amazing, especially the gods and the goddesses… Come to the Far East with me and see the energy there. They have different names, but they are living on Earth, even among the people.” What did you mean? Could you explain?

Cem Şen:
Yes, of course, but this is not limited to the teachings of the Far East. It is a reality in all areas. However, the battle between the gods and men during the last 16 or 17 centuries went against some gods.

The mighty gods lost their positions slowly. The empires, the kings, the ecclesiastics, the politicians, and then the monopolies captured the prestige of the gods. The ancient gods were beaten by the powers that became monopolies today.

Of course, not all the gods disappeared. That would be funny. They still exist in many regions of the world as entities that define some symbols, consciousnesses, and a state of reality. In some cultures, they have transformed into saints, holy people, or bad entities.

If not, they would not disappear in a few thousand years. These entities are the ones that we defined as gods, the ones who abode in the higher levels, and the ones who could be defined as immortal when compared to our limited lifespans. As I mentioned before, some of them are helpful, while others are barriers.

The entities who help the many holy people on their path of maturity are both good and evil. The ones who put barriers on the path make an effort to ban people from showing the path of resurrection to others.

The helpful ones help the people because they know that wisdom is the greatest power, and only a very small group of people may reach it. So, any person who reaches this wisdom can be a guide to the others trying to reach the gods, higher entities, and the wisdom.

As you see, a person who reaches this wisdom may rise to a higher position than the gods. Then these smart and good gods do their best for these wise people, because these people can now show the gods the path of wisdom.

Hasan “Sonsuz” Çeliktaş:
Well, we are confused enough now. I’m sure many readers are shocked. Most of them must be asking, “How?” In fact, I felt the same shock in Egypt, so now these things are normal to me. Let’s exaggerate some more. Once upon a time, these gods lived in bodies on Earth, didn’t they? As people thought they were different to the rest, they deified these different living creatures. Am I right? Or did these men emerge at a later period? Here, mythology and history are conflicted. On the other hand, how much should we trust in history?

Cem Şen:
Yes, I agree, but which history? We don’t know much about the real history. If a millennium was equal to one millimeter, then 4.5 billion years of history on Earth would be 4.5 kilometers. In comparison, we only know one or two centimeters of this world’s 4.5 kilometers of history. So, we can’t talk about the whole path when we only know two centimeters of it. By the way, history doesn’t proceed on a straight line.

While history is similar in similar regions, it proceeds on another historical line in other geographies. Sometimes, history may vary even within similar geographies.

For example, agricultural techniques were discovered simultaneously in different regions on Earth with similar climates. On the other hand, some cultures did not know, or did not need, these agricultural techniques at the same period. In fact, only one culture transformed agriculture into a lifestyle.

While others balanced their populations and let nature feed them, this one culture increased its population by increasing the supply of food. They grasped the whole world and created today’s culture. Probably and similarly, polytheistic belief was experienced simultaneously with the monotheistic one.

As you see, we have limited information about history on a chronological basis. We don’t know what happened in a certain period. For example, we know that in 14,000 BC, the Stone Age was experienced, where people didn’t know about permanent settlement. They were composed only of hunters and gatherers.

However, we now need to review our information about these things because of what we saw in the greatest temple in Gobeklitepe. If we could succeed in solving the secret of Gobeklitepe, do you think we would be able to understand that era totally? Of course not, because we would be able to understand the life in and around Urfa, but we cannot know what happened in the Pacific islands or America during the same period of time.

So, by only knowing two or three centimeters of human history on a path of 4.5 kilometers, we cannot claim we know the whole path. By the way, prehistory must date back, but our findings are very limited.

Well, let’s return to our main issue. Of course, all these entities existed on Earth once, and they still do. The entities on the higher dimensions can reach our world. Similarly, we can reach other dimensions by using the states of consciousness.

This is one of the reasons behind religious ecstasy and trances. People reach the higher dimensions of consciousness and therefore the higher dimensions of reality through these religious trance rituals.

Shamans were the first to use this method. Pagan cultures also followed this tradition. Both shamans and pagans saw no harm in using drugs and even sex in order to reach these higher states of consciousness.

In our day, the whirling of the dervishes, mantras, meditation, and other applications are used to reach the higher states of consciousness.

If you use these methods well, you will meet various entities from the other dimensions, which you may call angels, extra-terrestrials, higher spirits, or even gods.

In order to meet strong entities, which you may think of as gods, you need to reach a deeper state of consciousness. Not everyone can reach this state of consciousness, so only those who can will see the gods.

To answer your second question, these gods have a longer lifespan, so they were present on Earth before humanity. According to Buddha and other teachers, during the cycle where the universes collapse and renew again, the men turn into gods and the gods turn into men.

So, only those who reach wisdom may escape this cycle.

At the same time, we should not exaggerate the gods and other higher beings. As the light of the Almighty God is in us, and I use that name to be well understood, nothing is higher than us.

We have the same essence as the gods, and we are travelling toward home, but we have forgotten the way back. In ancient Greek philosophy, the word “Alethia” was used for reality. Alethia meant not to forget, or, in other words, remember. As you see, reality is remembering, and it is the path itself.

Hasan “Sonsuz” Çeliktaş:
At this point, of course, we remember the three main religions. All of them point to one God. All say there are not multiple gods but rather only one God. So how do you position the God of these religions and the ancient gods that still exist on Earth? Billions of people believe in one God, even if they use different names. So, things get complicated, don’t they?

Cem Şen:
All three religions use different names for the Almighty God, but they all refer to a unique God. They are all from the same race, and they are a continuation of one another. The Almighty God is the Brahman in Hindu teachings and the Tao in the Chinese culture. The Almighty God is called by different names in different parts of the world.

In different parts of the world, it is known that the Almighty God created us as a part of himself. So, we are the parts striving to return to the whole. It is defined by the words Brahman and Atman in Hindu teachings. The Almighty God is the Brahman, and one who carries his essence is the Atman.

Everything in the universe is a part of the Almighty God. It is humanity who names some of these parts as gods, not God himself. Some higher beings demanded to be called gods, but none of them need to be called the Almighty God.

There are some “jealous gods” who wanted to be referred to as the Almighty God, and this has been believed in since the Sumerians. These are called Mara in Hindu and Buddhist teachings. These beings are also known to the American shamans, as well as to practitioners in the East.

By the way, I need to remind you of one thing: Everything in the universe is determined by the states of consciousness. A lifestyle that helps us to reach morality, wisdom, and the states of consciousness is the fastest and shortest way to help us reach the Almighty One.

So, the sooner we purify our minds, the faster we can reach our inner spirit and help it to return to its real home. Then, what should we purify our minds from? From fear, anger, expectation, and all negative states of mind… Then, which characteristics should we develop?

Courage, freedom from expectation and need, mercy, and other positive states of mind… When we replace the negative states of mind with positive ones, we can reach the Heaven on this world that we have looked for. The heavenly state of mind we reach on this world will then be the gate to real higher dimensions.

All spiritual masters know we should always be ready for our last breath. We will be alive when we die. What does that mean? It means we will be attracted to a dimension of existence similar to our state of consciousness.

If our minds are full of anger, ambition, and fear, we will be attracted to a dimension of hell, but if we are courageous and graceful, we will be attracted toward a heavenly dimension.

All masters from all religions know this. For example, my grandfather started his preparations two weeks before his death. He told his children and my aunts and uncles, “I will be your guest for two weeks. I will then go on a journey.” On the day of his death, he performed an ablution on his whole body. He laid down on his bed and asked one of my aunts to read from the Holy Koran
He did not even drink a sip of water. He was afraid he would become canonically unclean and lack the strength to perform the ablution again. He told my aunts, “Do you want me to die unclean?” After he asked for blessings from everyone, he said his last prayers and took his last breath in comfort.

There are many Tao, Buddhist, and Hindu masters who do the same. They try to purify their consciousness all through their lives, and when the time for death comes, they experience a totally transcendent higher consciousness and begin their journey from this dimension to the Almighty One.

Like my grandfather, they are aware they are guests in that dimension, and they do not needlessly care for this world.

They both enjoy life and develop wisdom, and, as a result of that wisdom, they reach mental comfort and open the gates to the higher dimensions easily and therefore the gates to the higher dimensions of reality.

Sometimes, higher beings help us while we open these gates. These beings were called “gods” in some ancient cultures. I like to refer to them as old friends.

Hasan “Sonsuz” Çeliktaş:
Let me ask you an interesting question. I was talking to a friend a few days ago and discussing if these gods could be embodied at the moment. What do you think? If they do this unwittingly, do they suffer from it? Have you ever heard of it? Or, here’s another fantastic question:  If, for example, we met a God or Goddess, what could we do? I need both a spiritual and generic answer for this. God and Goddess concepts are the dimensions of consciousness as you said. I believe the Goddess in us should be awakened; the feminine energy should live again. But one of my friends says she is an embodied Goddess. What do you think?

Cem Şen:
If I’m correct, you’re asking me if a being with divine talents can come to our dimension in a human body. To be honest, I have no idea. I haven’t experienced such a thing, nor have I known anyone who has experienced something like it. However, I know there are some higher beings, or gods, that we meet.

In our day? Yes. Are there any witnesses? Not many. If you’re asking if gods and goddesses with dominant masculine or feminine characteristics could be embodied, my answer is again yes. However, I will ask another question: Is there any need for it? No! Is it important? No!

Imagine that a god appeared just in front of you and asked you to make a wish. What would you wish for? Peace? That’s impossible… Immortality?   So, what would happen then? Wisdom, peace, or what? There is no genie or god to give you these. Here is the place where the Almighty God left you with your free will. Here is the “as-sirat” (the straight bridge). So anything you wish for from a god or goddess that appeared suddenly would be a selfish wish. If Diogenes met with such a being, what do you think he would wish for?

Or, would Diogenes mind that being? What do you think he would do?

Hasan “Sonsuz” Çeliktaş:
Ok, so let me ask you a simple question. Would all these things help us in our daily lives? The ancient gods were real. OK! There are some states of consciousness. OK! Divinity is a state of consciousness. OK! So, what good are all these things? Whom should I pray to then? What should I wish for or not wish for?

Cem Şen:
What if the gods exist or not? If you don’t aim to negotiate with them for some worldly need, you should not mind either way. However, I cannot say the same thing for the states of consciousness. They mean everything. If you achieve getting in touch with reality by using the states of consciousness, then you can also reach the Almighty One.

The true states of consciousness do not only help us to reach happiness in this life, but also they guarantee that our journey will lead to the Almighty One.

Regarding prayer, let me tell you a story. This is the story of Arjuna, a Hindu hero. One day, a competition was held to choose the best archer in the country, and many archers from around the country attended this competition. A paper fish was hung on a long pole on a windy day, and the archers were told to shoot at the fish.

Even the best archers had trouble hitting the fish, but one of the archers shot it in the eye! It was unbelievable! The master archers began to question this archer as to how he managed to shoot the fish on such a windy day and in the eye no less?

The archer replied, “Before I aimed at the fish, I saw its eye. I just stared at it. Then I only saw the eye of the fish and nothing else. Then the eye began to grow and grow until it covered the entire universe. Of course, I shot the fish in the eye then, because there was nothing else other than the eye of the fish.”

So, with the same logic, Hasan, if there is only God and nothing else for you, it does not matter where you pray. Shams Tabrizi told a pilgrim candidate, “You need not go to Kaaba. Just hand around me, and you will be a pilgrim. Allah never entered inside (Kaaba) since this house was built, but he never got out of this poor man’s heart.”

If Allah is everything, what would you wish for or not wish for?

Hasan “Sonsuz” Çeliktaş:
Thank you Cem for this exciting and suprising conversation.