“I think if life isn’t teaching you, you’re not listening… I say spirituality and the afterlife exists, not because of religion, but despite of it. I could say that the religious lifestyle, a lot of people just want to tear it down. I think in a way it helped to have a bigger picture of life, that we’re not just here to pay the bills, that there’s bigger realities at hand. But I saw religion as just a prism of the light and not the light itself.”

Jacob Cooper, Clinical Social Worker, Certified Hypnotherapist, Reiki Practitioner

Jacob Cooper, or Jake, as he’s known to his friends zoomed all the way in from New York City recently to have a chat with us on The Coffee at Eleven Show.

Apart from being a Clinical Social Worker, Certified Hypnotherapist, Reiki Practitioner, Jake is also a near- death survivor and that experience had a profound impact on his life. He is the author of the recent release “Life After Breath” – How a Brush With Fatality Gave me a Glimpse of Immortality.

Ladies and gentlemen, I invite you to stick on the kettle, grab a coffee and think along with me and Jake for a short while in your preferred way

Jacob Cooper on The Coffee at Eleven Show

Yours Truly: Ladies and gentlemen, you are more than welcome to this. Another episode, episode 104 of The Coffee at Eleven Show. Brought to you by WIG-WAM, and this time supported by Limerick Post, Keeping Limerick Posted, #limerickandproud And it’s my great pleasure to introduce you to our guest for today. A man who’s Zoomed in all the way from New York City, and it is Jacob Cooper, AKA Jake to his friends here in the cafe. Jake, just pop in, say, “Hi,” cheers us with your coffee mug. And then allow me to introduce you properly.

Jacob Cooper: Hello, this is a coffee mug that’s has my astrological sign of Taurus on it. And I just had my birthday about a week ago.

I was always, I would say what’s called enigmatic. People didn’t really know what to make of me. I was always very reserved, a bit quiet, but always a funny guy, and the guy that people would ask about sports questions. But I wasn’t very engaged. I kind of did my own thing. I beat to my own drum always, so I was very private. I had a couple friends around me. But I learned in many ways how to work hard because if you didn’t, you wouldn’t survive. I think in order to survive, there’s no way around it. You needed to put in time.

I always think anything creative, if you look at Mozart, if you look at Michelangelo. Anything creative, I think it comes from you in a way, but it really mostly comes through you. And so I think this book really was, in a way, channeled. It’s something that moved through me.

I think in a way, in my own work as a therapist and healer, and other stuff, I’m finding that the oxygen, or what we could really breathe in, in today’s time, is inspiration. And I think really, if you’re able to have that, if you’re able to generate that, you’re able to really be resilient in the face of controversy, challenges, adversity. So I like to find inspiration as the foundation of my own life. Because when you have that, you could keep on going.

This book has within it, my own near-death experience, right? And we could talk about that soon, but there’s also components of memoir. See, I had this experience at the age of three-years-old, and so for myself it’s, you had this cool experience, but I think the cooler part is the human part. How did that shape you? What stuff did you go through? So I got very relatable and very transparent in the book, not for purposes of diary or vendetta or anything like that it, but rather for people to see themselves and find themselves in their story.

Because I think the goal within my near-death experience is, not for it to be mine, but to be a subtle reminder of other people that… And I know you’re speaking about home as a big part of your culture, the concept of home. But to me, that’s my culture too. We speak the same lingo.

I think it’s, as Ram Dass would say, who’s a great American spiritual teacher. He passed away around a year or two ago. “We’re all just walking each other home.” And I think finding ways to help out each other to come back to their essence, and to remind themselves of what, in a way, this is all about. Sometimes when that foundation is taken, we say, “To lose yourself, you could find yourself.” And that’s what happened.

I say spirituality and the afterlife exists, not because of religion, but despite of it. I could say that the religious lifestyle, a lot of people just want to tear it down. I think in a way it helped to have a bigger picture of life, that we’re not just here to pay the bills, that there’s bigger realities at hand. But I saw religion as just a prism of the light and not the light itself. So I was more connected to the concept of… As a child, I don’t go around saying these terms, but it’s just something you experience.

I guess the best definition of spiritual, is just your own unique connection to eternity, and finding the depth of life in itself in a subjective basis. It’s very personal. And so I try to do that.

Now regarding teachers and mentors, I think if life isn’t teaching you, you’re not listening. For good or bad, it’s always speaking to you. It always is. But we just got to listen.

There was a great baseball player on the New York Yankees who was kind of like Yoda in Star Wars. If you’re familiar with Star Wars, this kind of Zen kind of monk guy. His name was Yogi Berra. And he would say, “You could learn most things from just watching or just listening.”

And so I think that that’s important. But I had direct teachers in my life that came in my own backyard that I didn’t quite expect. Now some of these teachers came in my teen years, and they really helped me to take empowerment.

The one teacher that I had in my life, and the one book that I had in my life, was a book by a woman by the name of Betty Eadie called Embraced by the Light. That was a book on her own near-death experience. And after reading the book, I had this experience, but it’s not like I went around saying, “I had a near-death experience.” I didn’t have the vocabulary for it. I also had an experience where I felt alone. And so reading her book had me on a quest in a phenomenon to understand the universality that, yes, five to 10% of the population was having these occurrences.

It got me a little bit agitated, because I thought I was so special. And I’m like, “All right, a lot of people are having this too.” But at the same time, it was quite comforting to know that I wasn’t alone and other people had it.

Yours Truly: I’m going to ask you two quick questions, if I may. Because I want to bring Princess Shelley in to find out what’s been going on in the chat room. But we’d also invite some of our guests in the cafe here to have a conversation with you, if we may. Perhaps ask a question. So before we go there, if you don’t mind, what are you taking with you from COVID, Jake?

Jacob Cooper: You know, I would say the whole world today is having a near-death experience. And why I say that is, what I experienced, that moment of foundation taken away. That moment where I felt as if the rug that I was standing on was pulled, and being in this place of in-between, neither here nor there, forces people to move the needle of their foundation.

Where, in a way, with what you’re working on in that car, right, is not working. All of a sudden you have to find, like you said, the new gear. I think in a way it’s forcing people to reevaluate themselves, the nature of reality. What’s important. And almost this grasp of this world that we were living in. God, in a way. And that allows a new tree to open. See, it would be very hard for new trees to come in if we had every tree on the planet that didn’t die. And so we have one tree to die, to have a new tree to be born. If we had every human being that never died on the planet, there would be no square foot for it. So I think for a new change to happen, an old ideological reference has to be removed.

I think ultimately the goal is for people, hopefully at the very least, to understand what’s important. I think when finite is expedited, it forces us to focus on our lives and what’s really important, and to stop being so focused on the short-term versus being more emphasized on the long-term, bigger purpose.

I learned from my near-death experience that this spirit thing that I had, wasn’t just something monopolized by people in monks or people in churches, people that we see as holy. Rather, those people are just reminders that we have that same stuff in us, just as Christ did in His life. That we, in a way, have that divine spark, that eternal spark within ourselves.

But I think, in a way, to understand that this near-death experience, and hopefully with COVID, to understand the lack of randomness. The fact of the matter is that this is a life made by an infinite Creator with infinite intelligence, far greater than our own.

I think it’s important for people to trust in principles of the infinite wisdom, infinite grace, of eternity versus our own finite judgments. And trust in faith, versus their own fears.

Yours Truly: And then the last question, before we go to Princess Shelley, is you come across a friend who is struggling for whatever reason, because of what they’re going through in COVID. What would your piece of advice be?

Jacob Cooper: Yeah, I mean, one thing about COVID is there’s a unifying component, right? But I always say, “It’s a similar storm, but everyone’s in a different boat.” Everyone’s got their own unique situation. For someone to lose three or four family members, it’s not the same situation as someone who got sick by it, got very affected. But you can’t compare. Everyone’s suffering is subjective. For some people having three or four family members, they’re able to move on in their own way. But obviously that shakes them up.

But I would say for people struggling is to understand the illusion of being alone. The illusion of suffering. Suffering is synonymous with feeling alone and feeling as if we’re trapped, much like I had within my near-death experience and suffocation.

I think really it’s important that, sometimes for us to be able to see the stars, the darkness has to be there. And I think understanding that through seeing darkness, we could remember that light. I think we could all look back on our lives and seeing what we call the dark night of the soul, which I believe was a phrase made by someone like a priest or… I forget who named that.

But in a way, that darkness allows us to come back to the light, and we’re able to see it better, evolve it better. And we’re able to understand that, no matter what we’re going through, the inner light inside of us is infinitely greater than the finite challenges in front of us.

Wisdom is within us all the time, but we lose sight of that. I think really this lifetime is very much about integrating the infinite wisdom that we have to enhance our evolution.

And so sometimes we’re given tricks of the mind or tests. But it’s all a part of learning how to come back to home, and coming back to truth, within stuff that could really offset ourselves.

Stay safe, stay in touch.

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