Michael, a spirit entity, supposedly first manifest during a dinner party in the home of Walter and Jessica Lessing, a couple living in the San Francisco Bay area. The couple were playing with a Ouija board when reportedly a simple message appeared: "We are here with you tonight." When asked who "we" were, an entity replied, "The last name a fragment of this entity used was Michael" and added, "Each soul is a part of a larger body, an entity. Each entity is made up of about one thousand souls, each of which enters the physical plane as many times as necessary is to experience all aspects of Life and achieve human understanding. At the end of the cycles on the physical plane, the fragments once again reunite as we have reunited."
"Michael" indicated that the fragments comprised an ancient entity that comes to those who ask and teaches some understanding of human evolution. They hope to redirect people to their personal life plans and show them that which is wrong so they can come to a personal acceptance of truth. Understanding is achieved when the student can go on to agape, a nonsexual and selfless love, the goal toward which all should aspire.
The Lessings and their guests, Craig and Emily Wright, stayed at the board for the next five hours. In the days ahead they were joined by Lucy North (who became the group's typist) and Leah and Arnold Harris. After about six months of intensive reception of material, the small group began to grow until it numbered about thirty. Then in 1978 writer Chelsea Quinn Yarbro was introduced to the teachings and given access to the messages that had accumulated over the eight years since Michael first appeared. Her book Messages from Michael (1979) brought attention to the Michael teachings, expanded his audience, especially in the San Francisco area, and has led to the publication of much of the material.
The teachings are set within a familiar Gnostic/theosophical universe that divides existence into seven planes, which Michael calls the physical, astral, causal, akashic, mental, messianic, and buddhaic. Michael resides on the causal.
Baumbach, Emily. Michael's Cast of Characters. Orinda, Calif.: Affinity Press, 1989.
Pope, Joya. The World According to Michael. San Mateo, Calif.: Sage Publications, 1987.
Stevens, Jose, and Simon Warwick-Smith. Essence and Personality: The Michael Handbook. Orinda, Calif.: Warwick Press, 1987.
Yarbro, Chelsea Quinn. Messages from Michael. Chicago: Playboy Press, 1979.
——. Michael's People. New York: Berkeley Books, 1988.
——. More Messages from Michael. New York: Berkeley Books, 1986.