“Everything is Light”

“It seems that I have always been ahead of my time.” – Nikola Tesla, 1937

I was researching for a recent blog, and came across a very interesting (not to mention enlightening) interview of Nikola Tesla from 1899. Nowadays when folks hear “Tesla” they may think of Elon Musk. No, no, no. Nikola Tesla (b. 1856, Smiljan, Lika, now part of Croatia; d. 1943, New York City, U.S.A.) was light years ahead of the owner of the company that bears his name, in oh, so many ways. Tesla family lore recounted that when Nikola Tesla was born, at midnight during a thunderstorm, the fearful midwife, referencing the lightning as a bad omen, lamented, “He will be a child of the darkness,” to which his mother replied: “No, of light.”


“I am part of a light and it is music. Light fills my six senses: I see, hear, feel, smell, touch and think. Thinking about it is my sixth sense. Light particles are written notes.”

 “Numbers and equations are signs that mark the music of the spheres. If Einstein had heard those sounds, he would not have created Theory of Relativity. These sounds are messages directed to the mind about which life has a meaning, that the Universe exists in perfect harmony, and its beauty is the cause and effect of Creation.”


I am no biographer, and I urge you to do some of your own research on this fascinating scientist, inventor, philosopher, engineer, eccentric and so much more – he’s a truly amazing person. But this month (being the birth month of both my favorite electrical guy and my favorite engineer, and to honor the spirit of those two wonderful men) I wanted to focus on Tesla’s spiritual persona.


“All that lives is in a deep and wonderful relationship: the man and the stars, the amoebas and the sun, the heart and the circulation of an infinite number of worlds.”


First let me say that Tesla was one of “us” from an early age. Many of his writings on metaphysics show him to be deeply empathic. Tesla’s older brother Dane was killed in a horse riding accident when Tesla was five or six. Tesla witnessed the tragedy, and some postulate that young Nikola may have spooked the horse, causing it to rear and throw Dane to his death. But it’s been noted that it was after this event that Tesla began to develop into, as some have said, “the strangest man America ever knew.” In any case, after the death of his brother, Nikola began seeing visions, and was prone to episodes of astral projection, which is perhaps where he perceived some of his visions of the future. Many of Tesla’s greatest inventions (including the Alternating Current system in 1882, the development of which nearly drove him mad) were accompanied by periods of uncomfortably heightened sensory perception and transcendence, which often caused debilitating illness and mental deterioration.


“If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration.”

“My brain is only a receiver, in the Universe there is a core from which we obtain knowledge, strength and inspiration. I have not penetrated into the secrets of this core, but I know that it exists.”

 “Inside the Earth, there are energies of joy, peace, and love that are expressed for example through a flower that grows from the earth, food that comes out of it and everything that makes it the home of man. I’ve spent years looking for ways that this energy could influence people.”


He was apparently chosen to have knowledge about the nature of the Universe that few others did at the time, and, although he is renowned and revered for his intelligence and innovation then (and now even moreso), he was also taken advantage of financially, and sometimes mocked for his idiosyncrasies. His affinity for mysticism (and pigeons) was far from mainstream thought, and he was ridiculed for his ahead-of-his-time insights. In conversation, what often seemed like fanciful non sequiturs were the out-loud recounting of inopportune stream of consciousness visions of the future, or even other Spiritual planes of existence.


“The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.”


In 1895, Tesla met with Swami Vivekananda, upon request of the Swami, so that they could discuss the possibility of proving that all matter is potential energy, and thereby giving the Vendantic cosmological teachings scientific standing. Unfortunately, this correlation of energy and matter wouldn’t be proven until the discoveries of Albert Einstein some years later. But after meeting with the Swami, Tesla understood that the Vedantic philosophies were an appropriate means of describing the workings of the Universe as he saw them, and often spoke in Vedic terms while explaining them.


“All perceptible matter comes from a primary substance, or tenuity beyond conception, filling all space, the akasha or luminiferous ether, which is acted upon by the life giving Prana or creative force, calling into existence, in never-ending cycles all things and phenomena.”– in “Man’s Greatest Achievement,” 1907 (referencing the Sanskrit nomenclature of the Vedic Text Upanishads)


But one of the most fascinating insights into Tesla’s spiritual psyche came in the 1899 interview with John Smith of Immortality magazine, entitled “Everything is Light.” For me, perhaps the most interesting part of the interview was when Mr. Smith questioned Tesla – “Tell me, please, what conditions does an Angel adopt on Earth?” Tesla replied that there are ten, and relates his version of how we as Spiritual Beings survive here in our Earth bodies most successfully. The answer is quite amazing, and focuses on our interdependence with all that is, and all that exists in the Universe. He talks about transcendence and communion, and our responsibility to ourselves and one another. This was in a common theme in writings and conversations throughout his life.


“What we now want is closer contact and better understanding between individuals and communities all over the earth, and the elimination of egoism and pride which is always prone to plunge the world into primeval barbarism and strife… Peace can only come as a natural consequence of universal enlightenment…”

 “Though free to think and act, we are held together, like the stars in the firmament, with ties inseparable. These ties cannot be seen, but we can feel them. I cut myself in the finger, and it pains me: this finger is a part of me. I see a friend hurt, and it hurts me, too: my friend and I are one. And now I see stricken down an enemy, a lump of matter which, of all the lumps of matter in the universe, I care least for, and it still grieves me. Does this not prove that each of us is only part of a whole?”

 “Every time some of my close and beloved people were injured, I felt the physical pain. This is because our bodies are made from similar material, and our soul is related to unbreakable filaments. The incomprehensible sadness that overwhelms us sometimes means that somewhere, on the other side of the planet, a child or a generous man died.”


All empaths resonate emphatically with these feelings, and most other people (except, perhaps, those who have an illness such as narcissistic personality disorder or sociopathology) have the feelings, but can’t quite put a finger on the cause. Recent sad and traumatizing events in the United States bring home how we need to come together as a society with other like-minded Spirits to grieve losses together.

SMITH: In saying this I seem to listen to Buddhist texts, words or Taoist Parazulzusa.

TESLA: That’s right! This means that there is a general knowledge and that there is the Truth that man has always possessed. In my feeling and experience, the Universe has a single substance and a supreme energy with an infinite number of the manifestations of life.

SMITH: You have said that I am, like all beings, the Light. This flatters me, but I confess I do not quite understand.

TESLA: Why is it necessary to understand, Mr. Smith? Just believe. Everything is light. In one of its rays is the fate of nations. Each nation has its own ray in that great source of light that we see that it is the Sun. And remember that there is no man that has existed and has not died! It became light and as such still exists. The secret lies in the fact that the particles of light restore their original state.

Tesla has said that he is an inventor “of the future,” and that his vision was limited by the lack of technological advancement of the time in which he lived. This was evidenced by his uncannily prescient predictions of the future, not just technologically, but socially, culturally and even anthropologically.


“Within a few years a simple and inexpensive device, readily carried about, will enable one to receive on land or sea the principal news, to hear a speech, a lecture, a song or play of a musical instrument, conveyed from any other region of the globe. The invention will also meet the crying need for cheap transmission to great distances, more especially over the oceans. The small working capacity of the cables and the excessive cost of messages are now fatal impediments in the dissemination of intelligence which can only be removed by transmission without wires.”

 “The day science begins to study non-physical phenomena, it will make more progress in one decade than in all the previous centuries of its existence.”

 “Today the most civilized countries of the world spend a maximum of their income on war and a minimum on education. The twenty-first century will reverse this order. It will be more glorious to fight against ignorance than to die on the field of battle. The discovery of a new scientific truth will be more important than the squabbles of diplomats. Even the newspapers of our own day are beginning to treat scientific discoveries and the creation of fresh philosophical concepts as news. The newspapers of the twenty-first century will give a mere “stick” in the back pages to accounts of crime or political controversies, but will headline on the front pages the proclamation of a new scientific hypothesis.”

(Note: he was obviously abysmally wrong about this one, at least in the first quarter of the 21st century. He unfortunately miscalculated the effects that the proliferation of his “cheap transmission without wires” and the devolution of our psychic connection to one another would have on our societies).

“So all that was great in the past was ridiculed, condemned, combated, suppressed — only to emerge all the more powerfully, all the more triumphantly from the struggle.”


And some of his beliefs, showing his faith, compassion and hope in the future of humanity, I fervently hope will be adopted in this lifetime:


“Do your best, any day, anytime, not to forget who we are and why we are on Earth. There are extraordinary people who are struggling with illness, deprivation, or society that hurts them with their stupidity, incomprehension, persecution and other problems that the country is full. There are many fallen angels on Earth.”

 “There can be no progress that is not constantly directed toward increasing well-being, peace, and achievement.”

“Our virtues and our failings are inseparable, like force and matter. When they separate, man is no more.”


As a person who struggles constantly to find a balance in my own life between the seen and the felt, I identify with Nikola Tesla, and I plan to do a lot more research on this kindred Spirit. I hope that we can someday find just as much wisdom and usefulness in his Spiritual discoveries as in his Scientific inventions. Thank you, Mr. Tesla.

“Everything is Light.”

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