Welcome to the Beliefnet profile of the Association for Research and Enlightenment! The Association for Research and Enlightenment, Inc. (A.R.E. ®), is a not-for-profit organization, founded in 1931 by Edgar Cayce to research and explore transpersonal subjects such as holistic health, ancient mysteries, personal spirituality, dreams and dream interpretation, intuition, and philosophy and reincarnation.
The Mission of A.R.E. is simply to help people change their lives for the better through the ideas and information in the Edgar Cayce material. Through its many programs, services, publications and membership outreach, the A.R.E. provides individuals from all walks of life, levels of education, and religious backgrounds with tools for personal empowerment and healing at all levels – body, mind, and spirit.
Who Was Edgar Cayce?
For forty-three years of his adult life, Edgar Cayce demonstrated the uncanny ability to put himself into some kind of self-induced sleep state by lying down on a couch, closing his eyes, and folding his hands over his stomach. This state of relaxation and meditation enabled him to place his mind in contact with all time and space. From this state he could respond to questions as diverse as "What are the secrets of the universe?" to "How can I remove a wart?" His responses to these questions came to be called "readings" and contain insights so valuable that even to this day individuals have found practical help for everything from maintaining a well-balanced diet and improving human relationships to overcoming life-threatening illnesses and experiencing a closer walk with God.
Although Cayce died more than sixty years ago, the timeliness of the material in the readings is evidenced by approximately one dozen biographies and more than 300 titles that discuss various aspects of this man's life and work. These books contain a corpus of information so valuable that even Edgar Cayce himself might have hesitated to predict their impact on the contemporary world. Sixty years ago who could have known that terms such as "meditation," "Akashic records," "spiritual growth," "auras," "soul mates," and "holism" would have become household words to millions? Further details of Cayce's life and work are explored in the classic book There is a River (1942) by Thomas Sugrue.
The majority of Edgar Cayce's readings deal with health maintenance and the treatment of illness. Even to this day individuals have found physical help from information given as long as 100 years ago! Yet, although best known for this material, the sleeping Cayce did not seem to be limited to concerns about the physical body. In fact, in their entirety the readings discuss an astonishing number of 10,000 different subjects. Even this vast array of subject matter, however, can be narrowed down into a much smaller range of topics. When compiled together, the majority contain and deal with the following five categories: (1) Health-Related Information; (2) Philosophy and Reincarnation; (3) Dreams and Dream Interpretation; (4) ESP and Psychic Phenomena; and (5) Spiritual Growth, Meditation, and Prayer.