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Roberts, Jane


Born 8 May 1929, Albany, New York; died September 1984

Daughter of Delmar and Marie Burdo Roberts; married Robert F. Butts, Jr., 1954

Jane Roberts dedicated herself early to writing, beginning with poetry in her teens and later writing fiction. Nothing in Roberts' life, however, foreshadowed the development of her mediumistic abilities or the messages from Seth—"an energy personality essence no longer focused in physical reality"—which form the backbone of her literary production.

Roberts' first novel, Bundu, was published in 1958 and her second, The Rebellers, in 1963. In September 1963, Roberts had her first psychic experience, during which she wrote almost automatically while simultaneously feeling the conditions about which she was writing. Shortly after this event, Roberts and her painter husband began research for How to Develop Your ESP Power (1966, reissued as The Coming Of Seth, 1976) using a Ouija board. In 1963 Seth introduced himself via the Ouija board and soon afterward Roberts started speaking as Seth's voice. Since then, more than thousands of similar sessions have taken place, providing the material for Roberts' Seth-dictated books as well as many books associated with the Seth communications. Virtually all the Seth dictations have been recorded in shorthand by Robert Butts. Butts is also author of the running commentary which provides background and framework for the Seth-dictated material in the Seth books.

The cosmology voiced through Roberts by Seth is vastly different from the usual "spirit messages." Seth depicts a monist creation of which this universe is only a small fraction. Everything has consciousness; God is "All That Is" and, as a whole and in all "Its" parts, is constantly evolving. As well as being parts of All That Is, humans are also parts of entities greater than themselves; humans have free will nonetheless. They have existed before birth as individuals and, after death, will continue to do so. The Seth teachings emphasize the power and potential of the individual human. "You create your own reality" is a basic tenet of his message.

Since Seth's advent, Roberts has not limited herself to material dictated by him. Roberts' books depicting her own experiences in attempting to understand and apply Seth's philosophy add a poignantly personal dimension to the Seth communications. Roberts has also written two fast-paced novels about Oversoul Seven, which embody and vivify Seth's teachings. Another development in Roberts' career is her work on the "after-death journal." Two of these have been published, one received from the painter Paul Cézanne, and the other from the psychologist William James (The Afterdeath Journal of an American Philosopher, 1978).

The Seth teachings are complex, intellectually demanding, and not for everyone. Readers of like mind will find Roberts' Seth books uniquely challenging, expanding, and—if fortune smiles—deeply satisfying.

Other Works:

The Seth Material (1970, 1997). Seth Speaks: The Eternal Validity of the Soul (1972, 1988, 1994). The Education of Oversoul Seven (1973). The Nature of Personal Reality: A Seth Book (1974, 1980). Adventures in Consciousness: An Introduction to Aspect Psychology (1975, 1997). Dialogues of the Soul and Mortal Self in Time (1975). Psychic Politics (1976). The Unknown Reality: Volume One of a Seth Book (1977, 1989). The World View of Paul Cézanne: A Psychic Interpretation (1977, 1994). The Unknown Reality: Volume Two of a Seth Book (1979, 1996). The Further Education of Oversoul Seven (1979, 1984). Emir's Education in the Proper Use of Magical Powers (1979, (1984). The Nature of the Psyche: Its Human Expression (1979, 1987, 1995). Unlimited Challenges in a World of Limited Resources (1980). The God of Jane: A Psychic Manifesto (1981). If We Live Again, or, Public Magic and Private Love: Poetry (1982). Seth, Dreams and Projections of Consciousness (1987). Dreams, "Evolution," and Value Fulfillment: A Seth Book (1988, 1996). The Individual and the Nature of Mass Events (1994). The Magical Approach: Seth Speaks About the Art of Creative Living (1995). The Oversoul Seven Trilogy (1995). Secrets: A True Story from the Other Side of the Wall (1995). How to Develop Your ESP Power: The First Published Encounter with Seth (1996). The Way Toward Health (1997). Jane Roberts' A View from the Other Side (1998).


Andreae, C., Seances and Spiritualists (1974). Bentov, I., Stalking the Wild Pendulum (1977).

Other references:

New Realities (1977). VV (9 Oct. 1978, 16 Oct. 1978).


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