by Jack Williams ("San Diego Union-Tribune", December 31, 1999)
Charles Louis Spiegel, a cosmic visionary who shared his concept of immortality and extra-terrestrial life as director of the Unarius Academy of Science in El Cajon, has died. He was 78.
Mr. Spiegel died in his sleep Dec. 22 at his Mount Helix home, said Celeste Appel, an academy spokeswoman.
In the parlance of the academy's international followers, "he made his transition to the spiritual worlds," Appel said.
One of the tenets of Mr. Spiegel's teaching was that there is no such thing as death.
He did believe, however, that as many as 33 starships carrying extraterrestrials from the planet Myton will land on Earth some time in the year 2001. His predecessor as director of the 45-year-old academy, Ruth Norman, had purchased 67 acres in Jamul in 1975 to accommodate the expected visitors.
"I've discovered that everyone is searching for answers to life, death and immortality," Mr. Spiegel told The San Diego Union-Tribune in October. "Unarius is the teaching of spirituality and the science of life."
Although Norman died in 1993, Mr. Spiegel said that he continued to communicate with her through channeling. He also believed he had known her in a past life.
Mr. Spiegel said that, in 1949, while working nights in a post office to pay his way through the University of Southern California -- he had a vision of a beautiful woman smiling down on him. The vision, as it turned out, was of Norman.
Although he was exposed to the Unarius philosophy through the book he bought in a Boston book store in 1960, his vision didn't become a reality until the next decade.
In 1972, he joined the Unarius Academy faculty after leaving his job in Boston with Sun Life of Canada, an insurance corporation where he specialized in business and estate planning.
Known by his spiritual name of Antares to academy members, Mr. Spiegel didn't confine his teaching to his philosophic brethren.
He developed a course in past-life therapy and the psychology of consciousness, which he taught in the San Diego Community College District from 1976 to 1982.
To Mr. Spiegel, past-life therapy is a self-healing process that involves identifying current problems stemming from events in past lives and resolving them.
A prolific writer, Mr. Spiegel was co-author of 43 books on new age psychiatry, extraterrestrial intelligence and the nature of consciousness as a paranormal evolutionary process. He also wrote, "The Confessions of I, Bonaparte," which was published by the academy in 1985.
He lectured internationally, including visits last spring for seminars in New Zealand and Australia.
"Those who interacted with Dr. Spiegel on a daily basis will remember his example of selfless giving," said Appel, who edits Unarius Light, the academy's biannual journal.
"He saw the spirit and true potential in everyone," Appel said. "He was there for us as a friend, mentor and counselor, to help us with whatever went through our lives."
Mr. Spiegel grew up in Toronto, Canada, and served during World War II in both the Royal Canadian Air Force and the U.S. Marine Corps as an aerial photographer.
He completed studies for his bachelor's degree in 21/2 years at the University of Toronto, then transferred to USC for graduate work in educational psychology.
After receiving his master's degree, Mr. Spiegel taught English and communication arts in a Victorville high school. He returned in 1954 to Toronto, where he served as campaign director of the United Welfare Fund, an organization that provided financial aid to social service agencies.
In 1989, Mr. Spiegel was granted a degree of doctor of psychic therapeutic science by the Unarius Academy.
The degree was awarded in recognition of his understanding of the healing science of past-life therapy, Appel said.
Mr. Spiegel, who was divorced, is survived by a son, Larry of Brookline, Mass.; a sister, Beatrice Minden of Toronto, Canada; and a brother, Sidney of North York, Ontario, Canada.
No services have been scheduled.
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