7 Planes of Existence

Learn about the physical, astral, causal, akashic, mental, messianic and buddhaic planes
The Michael Teachings

7 planes of existence


Just as there are seven colors in the rainbow and seven tones in a musical scale, each with a different vibratory rate, there are seven planes of existence on the spectrum of creation. The slowest speed of vibration occurs on the physical plane; the highest, on the buddhaic plane. From the buddhaic plane, energy returns to its source, the Tao.

Physical plane: The densest of the seven planes; where we presently reside.

Astral plane: The second plane of creation. Its medium is concrete emotional energy. It is where our consciousness is focused between lifetimes and when we're finished with the physical plane.

Causal plane: The third plane of creation. Its medium is concrete intellectual energy. It is Michael's plane of existence.

Akashic plane: The central, neutral plane of creation that interconnects the other six. The distilled knowledge of the universe is recorded there. This is the records generated of everything that happens in the universe as it occurs. The appearance is that all matter and energy have a sort of built-in digital recording device, storing its entire history in a photographic code, but the records are actually windows into the past. The records show events exactly as they were experienced, so the information in them begins raw-it is not clarified, understood, and assimilated until a consciousness takes responsibility for doing so. Once it is fully assimilated, it is stored on the akashic plane.

Mental plane: The fifth plane of creation. Its medium is abstract intellectual energy, emphasizing truth. The infinite soul who incarnated as Lao-tzu taught from this plane.

Messianic plane: The sixth plane of creation. Its medium is abstract emotional energy, emphasizing love. The infinite soul who incarnated as Jesus taught from this plane.

Buddhaic plane: The highest plane of creation. Its medium is pure or abstract kinetic energy. We experience the buddhaic plane just before fully refocusing our awareness in the Tao. The infinite soul who incarnated as Buddha taught from this plane.


The Tao has created many universes, or overall experiments. (I am not speaking here of parallel universes.) Our universe is based in part on the law of seven. It permeates the Michael teachings and many other teachings, as well as being applicable to musical scales, colors of the rainbow, and so forth. Seven consists of two sets of three connected by one.

Twelve is another significant number in this universe, and it relates to seven. For example, the seven-note musical scale is a series of whole and half steps. It is drawn from the twelve-note chromatic scale, which is all half steps.

Apparently, other universes are based on different mathematical ideas. Some of our previous grand cycles may have been in other universes, especially if we have had a high number of them, since this universe is relatively young.

Michael brought up the topic of other universal schemes in relationship to the seven roles:

In this universe, the Tao fragments into the seven roles, like white light bent into the seven rainbow colors through the particular prism that this universe offers. A different universe might have a different prism that results in something that cannot be understood in this universe. Our system of seven is only one way a perfect whole can be differentiated.

This universe has seven planes, or dimensions. (A diagram later in this chapter illustrates them.) Three are ordinal (concrete), three are cardinal (abstract), and one is neutral, providing connection. The most ordinal plane is the physical, which is concrete energy. Its position is mirrored by the most cardinal plane, the buddhaic, which is abstract energy. The astral plane (concrete emotion) is the middle ordinal plane. It is mirrored in position by the middle cardinal plane, the messianic (abstract emotion). The causal plane (concrete thought) is the highest ordinal plane. It is mirrored in position by the lowest cardinal plane, the mental. This mirroring balances the universe. The higher planes are about pure energy, love, and truth; the lower planes are about manifesting them. The fulcrum of the balance is the neutral akashic plane. It connects all the others through the akashic or record-keeping aspect of each plane, which feed into it.

There are etheric, nonsolid levels of the physical plane both lower and higher in frequency than our physical bodies. Some people with psychic skills can see them. The fact that they can be physically seen indicates that they are part of the physical plane. We cannot physically see what is nonphysical, although we may translate our nonphysical perceptions into physical images. The etheric substance lower in vibration than the solid physical connects it with the Tao. This is the realm of devas, or nature spirits; it could be called the “lower physical plane.” The etheric substance higher in vibration than the solid physical connects it with the astral; it is in the realm of what could be called the “upper physical plane.” It is the domain of “ghosts,” and some extraterrestrials. The ethereal life form of the “higher sentients” who lived on earth before the “fall of man” was also of the upper physical plane. What we consider solid substance, as well as other vibrations that we can directly perceive such as light and sound, exist in the “middle physical plane.”

It might be more accurate to view the planes as being in a circle rather than a line. This is illustrated in the following diagram. Each spiral loop is a plane of creation. The six spiral loops that make one big loop, like a “Slinky” toy with the beginning and end connected, are the planes we experience in a progression. The loop in the middle is the akashic plane; it is not directly part of the progression because we do not actually have a cycle of experience there—it is a resource for the universe as a whole, and provides the Tao with a distillation of all that has been accomplished in this universe. The point of beginning (“Entrance”) and end (“Exit”) is in the Tao, the undimensional ground of all being—this is where we start and finish the game. The pattern filling each loop representing a plane matches that of the plane on the same axis; for example, both the astral and messianic planes are on the inspiration axis, and both are filled with a checkerboard design. The fill of the loop representing the akashic plane is a darker version of the neutral gray pattern that fills the circle representing the universe as a whole, signifying the akashic records that extend from the akashic plane and interpenetrate all the planes of existence. The akashic plane is directly accessible from the causal and mental planes, illustrated on the diagram with straight lines.

Although this model demonstrates the progression of sentient consciousness, it should not be construed as meaning that only the physical and buddhaic planes have direct contact with the Tao. The diagram illustrates this by showing the universe (the inner circle) as being contained within the Tao (the outer circle).

Since the Tao is the ground of all being, every plane has a direct connection with it. The Tao is inherent in any vibrational frequency; those on any plane can “arrive” at it “coming or going” through either increasing their frequency to “all frequency” or decreasing it to “no frequency.”

On the physical plane, by transcending the material illusions round about and entering into a space of no space and a time of no time, you experience the Tao. You can get there by descending through the earth vibration or ascending through the heaven vibration. The solid roles generally find the former to be easier. The fluid roles find the latter to be easier. However, any role can do both. This is available only when balance and nonattachment are achieved.

Incidentally, Michael normally uses the word Tao in place of God (depending on the beliefs of those listening) because God is usually personified as a judgmental and hierarchical male figure. They may also use the word God to signify the overall consciousness of the manifest universe, as opposed to its source in the dimensionless Tao. In that case, we are each part of both the Tao and God. As microcosmic individuals, we are sparks or units of the Tao experiencing this universe as separate essences. God could be seen as the macrocosmic individual, the larger “chunk” of the Tao who, as a whole, inhabits this universe and experiences the overall expansion and lessons the Tao seeks.

Shepherd Hoodwin

Can we hear more about planes?

You understand that this is an extensive subject. The time in planes is presently misunderstood. The planes of existence are different levels, as in ladders, though your time concepts are being misinterpreted.

You are now living in your time, and yesterday and tomorrow are all the same, going on now, as with today. Planes are ladders, steps, graduations. This is unclear because you cannot see above you.

As you see yesterday, it is somewhat clearer to you how you are misusing energies. And yet, if in the right place, you can see tomorrow, as it is all happening now.

The planes are a way to step up and see better — a reward, as such, for growth. You can be where you are or in yesterday or in tomorrow, all at the same time.

Your growth and work places you where you can understand. There is much difficulty seeing even today and yet the truth is that to grow and learn, you must stop seeing today and be able to see yesterday, now and tomorrow all as one, and develop yourself according to your needs.

On the higher planes, you can see yesterday and today and tomorrow, and yet cannot see higher than you are.

Michael Teachings Transcripts


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Related Articles:

The Soul's Journey
The Akashic Records
Previous Cycles
The Game

About Shepherd Hoodwin

Shepherd has been channeling since 1986. He also does intuitive readings, mediumship, past-life regression, healing, counseling, and channeling coaching, where he teaches others to channel. He has conducted workshops on the Michael teachings throughout the United States. His other books include Enlightenment for Nitwits, Loving from Your Soul: Creating Powerful Relationships, Meditations for Self-Discovery, Opening to Healing, Growing Through Joy, Being in the World, and more to come.

Visit his website at ShepherdHoodwin.com


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