Edgar Cayce A.R.E. Library – Virginia Beach, Virginia - Atlas Obscura

Edgar Cayce A.R.E. Library

Headquarters of the legendary clairvoyant's readings, spiritual hospital, and massage school. 


Edgar Cayce was a well-known claimant of psychic and healing powers throughout the early 20th century, and is largely responsible for introducing to the public consciousness such ideas as extra-sensory perception (ESP), paranormal activity, and holistic healing (in the spiritual sense).

From his estate in Virginia Beach, Cayce founded the Association for Research and Enlightenment (A.R.E.) in 1931, including a hospital in which he nursed patients back to health. Cayce used his talents for massage, acupressure, dietary regulation, and spiritual guidance to form a center for the ‘scientific exploration of the human metaphysical experience.’

Beyond such outwardly directed clairvoyance, Cayce kept impeccable records of his visions. Perhaps his most memorable vision predicted that in 1968, divers would locate the long sought after ruins of Atlantis off the coast of Bimini in the Bahamas. For decades thereafter, marine explorers scoured the atoll for any sign of Atlantis. Sure enough, in 1968 divers found what is now called “Bimini Road,” a series of six- to eight-foot-tall, precisely angled limestone blocks submerged in 15 feet of water. It is as of yet unclear what natural forces caused such formations.

Of course, Cayce made many other predictions, including that the true age of the Great Pyramid was built over 10,000 years ago B.C. After followers of Cayce attempted to date the temple it was found to have been built around 3000 B.C. ; some 7000 years later than what Cayce had claimed. Cayce also predicted that 1933 would be a good year (it was the height of the great depression), details of the Lindbergh kidnapping (which were incorrect), and that China would be converted to Christianity by 1968, which, of course, it has not been.

Continuing the family mantle after his father’s death, Hugh Lynn Cayce commissioned the A.R.E. Visitor Center after envisioning a public center to draw attention to his father’s work. Located adjacent to the original hospital, A.R.E.’s headquarters include a meditation garden, a 42-foot-wide labyrinth, and a silence-only meditation chamber with an unobstructed view of the Atlantic on the Visitor Center’s third floor.

Contained within the renowned A.R.E. Library are all 14,306 of Edgar Cayce’s readings, original manuscripts, an ESP testing machine used developed by Cayce that was later used by Duke University for experimentation, and one of the most respected collections of metaphysical literature in the world. Transcripts are cataloged and available for browsing, whence intrepid visitors can pour over Cayce’s predictions in search of clues to humanity’s past, present, and future.

Please note: Guided tours are offered daily at 2:30pm; ESP demonstrations are given every Saturday and Sunday at 1pm. Otherwise, personal exploration is expected, though aides at the Visitor Center reception desk happily answer questions.

Know Before You Go

Follow Atlantic Avenue north from central Virginia Beach until reaching 67th Avenue, at which point A.R.E. will be on the left.

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January 16, 2010

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