I'm interested in what everyones views of mysticism are, particularly those who would dismiss religion, do you also dismiss mysticism too? Is it because it seems like superstition, does not seem to have any veracity or is tainted as you have described religion to be? Are there mystical or esoteric experiences besides religion?
I read recently again a Christian/RC writer approach this topic and reiterate the standard RC line about mysticism, that should anyone have mystical experiences they are to be accepted but they are not to be sought out, this is something the Church is really adament about, in the past because it appeared to tempt possession or be meddeling with unseen or incomprehensible powers and today, although some people still believe the former too, because of the risks of mental health issues becoming manifest or over taking the individual.
In some ways that would be my position too, I've been to seances and tarot readings and fortune telling but I've never taken part personally, about as mystic as I get is prayer and meditation, different spiritual exercises which I learn about and try, with varying degrees of interest or reward its got to be said. I wouldnt go in for any of the exercises in starving or self-denial which are meant to provoke visions and even less so any experimentation with drugs or intoxication.
The thing about the tarot readings or oracles is that I think there could be something to the bizarre stories about the delphic oracles reporting that Christ as dead and things of that kind but I would locate it with other strange psychological phenomenon like cognitive resonance, Jungian ideas like the collective unconscious or the like as opposed to spirits strictly speaking.