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I actually disagree a little bit with some of Crookall's ideas. The reason is that from information I've read (through similar sources) it would seem that when Jesus, Buddha, or whoever appears at a deathbed; the truth behind it is a spiritual being is giving a dying person what he or she expects so as not to frighten the person. If somebody truly believes in seeing Jesus, then certainly somebody will appear in the form of Jesus.

Next, concerning cigar smoking, the question I ask is: how is cigar-smoking impossible in the afterlife dimension? Not everything is restricted to the shadowy world of the astral. If there is a lucid environment that we exist in hereafter, I would imagine cigar-smoking is perfectly possible. From what I understand, we have bodies in the other world, but our minds control those bodies versus the bodies controlling our minds like on Earth. Therefore, everything is possible there as here, with the exception we are no longer slaves to the powers that be.

This Hades concept makes more sense related to completely illogical phenomena. Like, fictional characters appearing. I certainly would not want to be greeted by the Easter bunny when I die. But, if I were, I would attribute it to the dream state intercepting my reality. Dreams, in my opinion, are places where the subconscious mind and imagination run wild. It's a personal world, but perhaps networked with other minds, bringing influence from many places... Sort of an ethereal internet, but far less solid.

I have read hundreds of NDEs and I have yet to read one which included completely abstract, nonsensical characters. I'm sure these NDEs exist, but I am assuming it must be pretty darn rare for this to happen. But due to the fluidity of the spirit world, and the fact that an advanced spirit can take any shape it pleases, from this standpoint it's almost justified. Certainly, a few abstract NDEs possibly influenced by a dream state or disconnection from reality does not discount NDEs. It's also possible these hallucinatory episodes are from people who have not exactly "died" but are tripping out on the drugs administered in the hospital. Which would therefore make the essence of this argument: "If hallucinations can exist in a hospital, NDEs are therefore hallucinations" which any researcher with integrity would tell you this is not the case.

Am I the only one who thinks a web site called "infidels.org" is a rather ridiculous place to see skeptical NDE literature? Consciousness survival is not a religious movement and there is certainly nobody involved with this topic (besides maybe one particular outspoken internet critic) who would consider somebody an "infidel" for discounting any of it.

I look at sites like that, and I can't help but wonder if these "naturalists" are really happy. They are always on the attack. They never stop to think, discuss, and look at alternate viewpoints just for the sake of debate. They're always flamed up, often shouting conspiracies that the Church is trying to brainwash the world and only the light of atheism will save us all.

Regarding Augustine's article, it's filled with holes. The article quotes this paragraph by Harvey Irwin to try and discount blind NDEs:

"[These cases] may be inspired by accounts of other people's NDEs that have been widely disseminated in various forms of the media. That is, might a blind person have heard that people see certain things in a near-death encounter and unconsciously generated a fantasy that conformed to this belief?... [Blind NDErs might also] learn about what to expect in an afterlife from diverse sociocultural sources, and they may rely extensively on these expectations in generating a near-death fantasy.... Thus, the blind may commonly have a belief that they will suffer no visual affliction in an afterlife, and this belief may influence the content of NDEs in the blind (Irwin, "Mindsight" 112)."

This argument is clutching at straws. Instead of taking the evidence as a whole and looking at the profound impact of sight on a blind NDEr, plus possible information relayed regarding color and shape which the blind person could have never known, the argument shifts to this ridiculous notion of a media inspired fantasy (probably hinting at an equally condescending viewpoint that the media shouldn't cover the supernatural or spiritual, because it's giving the poor sheep these fantasies). This is the same old "marsh gas reflecting off the rings of Saturn" argument. The harder the topic gets to debunk, the more ridiculous the skeptics become.

I haven't completely read that infidel website but reading a bit trough it I understand he(the author)thinks most-if-not-all near death experiences with uber weird elements such as centaurs or what not seem to suggest a hallucinatory based NDE instead of a legit afterlife experience.

I'm not much of a Pim van Lommel on NDE's,but I do find it particular that some NDE have dream-like circumstances,for instance-you expect to see Jesus during NDE and a Jesus-like-figure appears,or an example as was mentioned on Infidel website regarding a Centaur-like-creature appearing.

You're feelings,thoughts and desires influence the shapes and environements in dreams,such appears also to be the case during these weird NDE's.This deepens my interest even more in to know the origin of dreams.

Are dreams at the border of the afterlife?
If this is the case then we're dealing with very complicated territory where alot of laws interpenetrate eachother.

Currently I have to say generally assumed about these weird cases I dont know what the hell they are.But if people also experience dreams during the dyingproces then it opens up a pandora box of other weird stuff to figure out.

Infidels website is a sacred place of most atheists, materialists and philosophical pseudo-skeptics. Infidels nemesis blog may be seen at this anti-atheism website:
http://atheismsucks.blogspot.com/

Most pseudoskeptical criticisms of NDEs are pure rethoric:
http://www.nderf.org/NDE%20Rhetoric.htm

Some cases of NDEs can't be explained away so easily.

I think the Spiritual Universe (Heaven or Paradise) is a place where thoughts are things and consciousness creates reality. A place where matter is an epiphenomena of consciousness or consciousness is primary and matter is secondary. I also believe that the other side will look and feel just as real to us as this side does now. Each one of us will create or generate our own reality. We will create our own heaven or hell. The reason Howard Storm had such a negative NDE is because he turned his own negativity into demons. He took his hate, anger, resentment, jealousy, rage, greed, selfishness and turned them into demons so that he could do battle with them before entering into the light. He had to conquer his demons before he could go into the light. At the point when he called out to the light, the light appeared. Is it any stretch of the imagination that an self proclaimed atheist Art Professor would be able to conjure up a demon in a place where thoughts become things? The difference between the other side and this side is that on this side it is the collective consciousness that creates reality and in the Spiritual Universe it is individual consciousness that is able to create reality. We may not be able to win the Powerball lottery jackpot in the physical universe just by concentrating on our numbers because millions of other people have their own numbers they are hoping to be drawn, but in the Spiritual Universe we will be able to conjure up any kind of afterlife we might hope to exist in. I doubt any soul would want to exist in eternal misty nothingness for eternity. Perhaps the whole point of this physical life is to get a taste of what it means to inhabit or be in a physical universe so we can use those memories to conjure our own reality after we cross over. We are spiritual beings having a physical experience and the purpose of that experience is to get a taste of what it's like to live in a 3D + 1T Universe. NDE'ers routinely say that time and space didn't seem to exist on the other side, but they also say that just by having the most fleeting thought of something they were there experiencing it. We are gathering memories and the most beautiful thing is that all those memories are stored in such a way, and because of the overwhelming feelings of connectedness and oneness on the other side, we will be able to "borrow" the memories which are being created of every living creature in the entire Universe. We will be able to know what it was like to soar like an eagle or swim like a blue whale or a dolphin. Every single microscopic centimeter of this earth is being mapped and scoped by living creatures, perhaps even bacteria and protozoans and ants and flies and mosquitoes may be storing information in the "Akashic Records" for the soul to access and experience. Keep in mind the "out of time" element of those experiences. We may also be able to go back into the distant past and observe and experience the lives of dinosaurs and neandertals. I may be able to see and experience passenger pigeons and other birds which have gone extinct in my time but exist somewhere in Akashic records.

I could just go on and on but I need to quit somewhere. Let me know if you want links to NDE's which support my theories.

When George Pellew (Pelham) started communicating through Leonora Piper, he said that to those in his sphere, we humans are “sleeping” in the material world and are in what to them is a “dream-life.” For them to communicate with us, they have to enter this sleep state, which adds to the confusion in communicating. As I further understand it, while in the dream state, they experience things as weird as we sometimes experience in our dreams and these are communicated as if they are real, whatever "real" is taken to mean. Thus, Raymond Lodge may have been "dreaming" about people on that side smoking cigars and communicated it to his father as if it were "real."

After Frederic W. H. Myers crossed over in 1901, he began communicating with Sir Oliver Lodge through Rosalie Thompson. He explained that in attempting to visualize the surroundings at the Lodge home during the sitting, it was if he were looking at a misty picture. He could hear himself using Thompson’s voice, but he didn’t feel like it was his “whole self” talking. He said he was having a difficult time in remembering things. In fact, he could not recall his mother’s name. Nelly, Thompson’s control, took over from Myers and explained that Myers was still in a state of confusion and would remember a great deal more in time. Thus, it appears we are in various states of "awakening" on the other side, but that those who are still in the sleep state, to whatever degree, can also communicate, and this communication can be as strange as many of our dreams.

Not exactly on the same subject, but related in the sense that it shows how things work on that side, I was recently rereading Dr. Charles Richet's book on his research, which involved a number of materializations. One communicating spirit explained to Richet that he was unable to materialize himself because he could not remember what he looked like when he was "alive." Thus, we get back to the whole "thought-world" idea.

Michael Tymn: interesting points Michael thanks for sharing them. Have you sit in on DP's séances or have they offered you an opportunity to sit in on them? With all this starlight and passive night light technology it appears to me that if these séances are what they say they are they would welcome such technology in their séances.

A great piece from Michael followed with some great comments from the gallery. Several things occur to me here.

First, Cyrus brings up a very pertinent point in his second post, one that is not addressed often: “I can't help but wonder if these "naturalists" are really happy”. I’d like to suggest that a question we could all ask ourselves more often is whether our fundamental inner state is one of contentment or dissatisfaction.

I recognize an underlying sense of deep discontent flowing without interruption behind the writings and comments of those who adopt any rigid worldview. This sense of discontent is not just limited to those with a materialist bent, as those with an opposite take on things can appear just as bitter. Victor Zammit and James Randi are polar opposites in worldview, yet strange bedfellows in their tendency to rant. If I mention Keith Augustine or Richard Dawkins, at what point does “happy, peaceful, contented person” come to mind? Ditto for George Bush, or Osama Bin Laden.

It begs the question: Is this discontent the product of external circumstances or ideas, or is it tied to the failure of externals to conform to the particular belief system of the one experiencing the discontent? If the answer is the latter, then what does that say about the nature of reality itself?

The second thing that occurs to me has to do with the idea of a blending of the dream world with this one that Crookall describes, a sort of surreal state of existence. I can’t help but be reminded of the Seth Material, and Seth’s explanation that the dream state we experience while on earth actually has more validity than our waking state. He suggests that we actually have it backwards – our waking state is a dream, while our genuine self is busy in other realms as we sleep. I tend to cast a skeptical eye on channeled material in general, but the sheer volume of the Seth Material coupled with the consistency of his philosophy does intrigue me. I also find it interesting that he describes fundamental reality as timeless (confirmed by NDE testimony), and goes on to discuss our perceptions of other levels of existence and ideas of reincarnation as flawed in the sense that it all is happening *now*, in a sort of pregnant moment. He describes our essence as a kind of kaleidoscopic Mandela, our various aspects immersed in countless multiple experiences simultaneously.

Finally, to quote Art’s post: “I think the Spiritual Universe (Heaven or Paradise) is a place where thoughts are things and consciousness creates reality. A place where matter is an epiphenomena of consciousness or consciousness is primary and matter is secondary. I also believe that the other side will look and feel just as real to us as this side does now. Each one of us will create or generate our own reality. We will create our own heaven or hell.”

I think the most fascinating of the NDE accounts I’ve read is the Mellen Thomas-Benedict experience:

http://www.near-death.com/experiences/reincarnation04.html

He describes multiple afterlife realms, populated by adherents of numerous belief systems. On the one hand, it can be read as an observation of other fully genuine realms and realities, but it can also be read as an exploration of the divine consciousness itself, each realm that he describes having permanence only to the degree that the occupants believe in it’s veracity, the permanence we would attach to an idea. I had the same sense of an exploration of divine consciousness while reading Sri Yukteswar’s description of the astral realms in Chapter 43 of Autobiography of a Yogi:

http://www.ananda.org/inspiration/books/ay/43.html

As MP suggests, when all of the testimony together is considered, a truly reasonable person would have to conclude that there is something to it.

Maybe most intriguing of all though, is the idea that the realm we are currently experiencing is as ephemeral as all others, with the only thing preventing our realization of that being our own beliefs.

Maybe most intriguing of all though, is the idea that the realm we are currently experiencing is as ephemeral as all others, with the only thing preventing our realization of that being our own beliefs.
Michael H

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After we cross over we may look back on our life in the physical realm as being not much different than how we feel after we've watched a really compelling movie. We identify with a character and feel some emotional attachment but soon afterward we forget about it and go about our real lives. I still say that the purpose of this life is to experience what it's like to live in a 3D + 1T Universe, where time and space appear to be real, and experience separation so that the soul will know what it feels like to be separate, unique, individual. And after crossing back over into the Spiritual Universe it will use that information to create it's own reality. As Jesus says to the Pharisees in John 10:34 "Jesus answered them, "Is it not written in your Law, 'I have said you are gods'?"

William asked if I have had an opportunity to sit in on one of "DP's" seances. I assume he meant DT. No, I have not. I live in the Sandwich Islands and to my knowledge he has not been in this neck of the jungle. I did receive an e-mail from someone who did sit with him recently and he is convinced that DT is genuine. He described test conditions and hearing from his father, but I didn't get all the details on the communication. At the same time, I understand that DT's web site has disappeared from the web as has the Silver Cord site reporting on his seances. Not sure what to make of that.

Back to Richet's materialization studies as well as others, I believe that the thought projection aspect explains many ridiculous looking materializations -- some just faces, some half bodies, some looking like plastic dolls, etc. The problem is, as I interpret it, that the spirit has to project his or her image into the ectoplasm. If he is focusing only on the upper half of his body, then that is all that will be projected. If only the face, then only the face or head will be projected. If he has a very murky recollection of what he looked like, the materializaation might look like a plastic doll.

Think about it. If you were asked to visualize yourself and project the image of yourself to someone on the other end of a phone line, what image would you come up with? Would you picture yourself as you looked in the mirror while shaving in the morning or how you looked in your wedding picture? Would it be a whole body image or just a portrait image? Many of the old spirit photographs were supposedly debunked because they looked very much like portraits of the person when alive. But it may be that the old portrait was what the communicating spirit was focusing in on when attempting to project his image on to the photographic paper. The old portrait was his best recollection of what he looked like when alive.

some of my favorite quotes on the reality of this universe......

"As the religions of the East have long upheld, the material world is Maya, an illusion, and although we may think we are physical beings moving through a physical world, this too is an illusion." - The Holographic Universe
http://www.earthportals.com/hologram.html#zine

"Everything we call real is made of things that cannot be regarded as real." - Niels Bohr

"If quantum mechanics hasn't profoundly shocked you, you haven't understood it yet." - Niels Bohr

"Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one." - Albert Einstein

>I believe that the thought projection aspect explains many ridiculous looking materializations

Maybe so, but if we buy into this line of reasoning, there will be no limit to the mediumistic absurdities that we must accept as true. Houdini's Southern accent? Merely Louis Armstrong helping him manifest. The medium caught outside the cabinet? An evil spirit influenced him etc, etc.

We must draw the line somewhere and call a spade a spade.

Cyrus said: I certainly would not want to be greeted by the Easter bunny when I die.
From the Well, you never know department...
Floating above your body, you are drawn into a tunnel. Traveling faster and faster you finally see a light at the end and a radiant being in it. The being takes a bite out of a carrot, raises his long ears, places a paw on your shoulder and says "eh... what's up, doc?"

"If quantum mechanics hasn't profoundly shocked you, you haven't understood it yet." - Niels Bohr

Art did Niels Bohr believe that he understood quantum mechanics. Never did like the term mechanics appears to make the universe look like a machine.

Does anyone understand quantum theory?

When it is all said and done I suspect that they will find those “things” they thought they were looking at are not things but waves and/or vibrational levels of consciousness.

And when they look deeply into consciousness I suspect they will find what many call nothingness, which is really pure awareness.

Calling a spade a spade. With DT’s séances we don’t know if we have a spade or a heart or a club or whatever at this time. Not enough data.

"As the religions of the East have long upheld, the material world is Maya, an illusion, and although we may think we are physical beings moving through a physical world, this too is an illusion." - The Holographic Universe

That word illusion is thrown around quite a bit. Go jump off a tall building and find out if gravity or concrete is an illusion. Don’t pay your taxes and find out if the IRS is an illusion. When you get a speeding ticket tell the judge you don’t plan on paying it because it was all an illusion. See if the judge agrees with you or sends your illusional buns off to jail.

The advaita types love to use the words illusion and nothingness and claim that they don’t exist and then proceed to sign with a personal name and in another instance one self proclaimed advaita guru writes books on how to be successful. We humans are an interesting species.

Go jump off a tall building and find out if gravity or concrete is an illusion.......The advaita types love to use the words illusion and nothingness and claim that they don’t exist and then proceed to sign with a personal name and in another instance one self proclaimed advaita guru writes books on how to be successful. We humans are an interesting species. - William
____________________________________________

If one does jump off a building I think from the standpoint of eternity their soul will be okay. As I've stated many times before, most of my beliefs come from NDE's, death bed visions, and the holographic universe. From Michelle M's NDE:

"I felt an understanding about life, what it was, is. As if it was a dream in itself. It's so very hard to explain this part. I'll try, but my words limit the fullness of it. I don't have the words here, but I understood that it really didn't matter what happened in the life experience, I knew/understood that it was intense, brief, but when we were in it, it seemed like forever. I understood that whatever happened in life, I was really ok, and so were the others here."
http://nderf.org/michelle_m's_nde.htm

"If one does jump off a building I think from the standpoint of eternity their soul will be okay."

I doubt Art if they are speaking from the standpoint of their soul's eternity but these are intellectual statements that everyone on this blog could make.

Art here are some synonyms for illusion: chimera, delusion, false impression, fantasy, daydream, and figment of your imagination. Do we really believe any of these synonyms accurately explain life, as we know it?

If we wanted to take this illusion idea farther then even the soul is an illusion. And that nothingness they talk about well I suspect that nothingness is everything, all and all, isness, the absolute and what most call God. It appears to be nothingness because we cannot comprehend pure awareness.

Most people consider awareness a function of consciousness where I lean in the direction that consciousness is a manifestation of awareness. Consciousness allows interaction where pure awareness would only be aware of “oneness”.

In response to my comment that thought projections might explain many ridiculous looking materializations, Greg L wrote:

"Maybe so, but if we buy into this line of reasoning, there will be no limit to the mediumistic absurdities that we must accept as true. Houdini's Southern accent? Merely Louis Armstrong helping him manifest. The medium caught outside the cabinet? An evil spirit influenced him etc, etc."

Greg, I'm not sure I see the connection outside of the fact that we're talking absurdities. Just because one thing is absurd and might be explained doesn't mean we have to accept all absurdities or that the phenomena has to conform to our limited intellects. To quote Dr. Charles Richet, the 1913 Nobel Prize winner in medicine: "Yes, it is absurd, but it is true."


One more thing I meant to add to my last post. It is something I have asked before but nobody has given me a good answer. Michael ran a very hokey-looking Helen Duncan materialization a few months back. It is so ridiculous and absurd that no one could possibly believe it is real. The question is: Was Helen Duncan that stupid that she thought she could dupe Harry Price and other sitters with something that doesn't even resemble a human being? The absurdity of it seems to lend itself to truth more than it does to fraud.

"Was Helen Duncan that stupid that she thought she could dupe Harry Price and other sitters with something that doesn't even resemble a human being?"

as far as stupid one only has to look to wash dc and the answer is yes people can be pretty stupid.

I mean when a politican has to go hunting and be seen with a gun and shoot birds to get the evangel vote. after that do we really have to ask are people stupid.

the mere fact that helen knew things about what was happening in the war that the government wanted to keep secret tells us she must have had some abilities.

You know, I do think the afterlife is a place where thought can create reality. But, it's not as vague as that. In Monsieur Hugh Benson's Life in the World Unseen, the deceased author (purportedly deceased, of course) states that the afterlife is not a place that's abstract, with every other person creating walls and flowers and volcanos and what have you with their minds. The book said there would never be this amount of discord, and it's the work of beings of the highest levels to provide a more ordered system so that we can have enjoyable lifestyles.

The Unseen books describe an environment where thought can create an object like a flower; but the creator must have full understanding of the anatomy of the flower (much like an artist must know his or her subject) and it is not given life unless it is specially animated by the divine source through the aid of higher beings.

Just food for thought. I always love the Unseen books because it's the one description of the afterlife which makes a good bit of sense to me. Of course, we cannot prove Anthony Borgia was really channeling the dead priest, but that doesn't make the books any less great.

An interesting bit of information from the book “the supreme adventure”. Page 220.

“Myers pointed out that one result of the controls mental condition so produced may be apparent fraud by the medium. He said that since the discarnate control is often temporarily in a partially hypnotic state he is very open to suggestion. He continued many instances of fraud committed by mediums who practice physical phenomena may be traced to this condition. If any of those persons present at the séance suspect or anticipate even sub consciously, deception and trickery on the part of the medium their thoughts will be as powerful in their effect as the commands of a hypnotist to his patient. Acting on the autosuggestions made by those present an honest medium will commit fraudulent acts and yet will be completely innocent.”

It appears that this statement came from Myers communicating thru the medium Geraldine Cummins. Of course we could state that Geraldine Cummins made this up but I believe that Myers came thru many mediums in cross correspondence.

Anther paranormal researcher in South Africa independently came to this same conclusion as Myers.

Could this phenomenon explain why a certain physical medium in England was caught out of his chair? Maybe, maybe not, but something to think about.

Cyrus: interesting insights on our ability to project our mental thoughts into a perceived reality on the other side. Newton in his book journey of souls talks about souls receiving training on how to create different forms using mental thoughts.

Hellow,

I think NDE's themselves can shed some light on the topic. Like Michael H already said Mellen Benedict Thomas his NDE is very interesting on this topic:
"As I began to move toward the light, I knew intuitively that if I went to the light, I would be dead.

So as I was moving toward the light I said, "Please wait a minute, just hold on a second here. I want to think about this; I would like to talk to you before I go."

To my surprise, the entire experience halted at that point. You are indeed in control of your near-death experience. You are not on a roller coaster ride. So my request was honored and I had some conversations with the light. The light kept changing into different figures, like Jesus, Buddha, Krishna, mandalas, archetypal images and signs.

I asked the light, "What is going on here? Please, light, clarify yourself for me. I really want to know the reality of the situation."
I cannot really say the exact words, because it was sort of telepathy. The light responded. The information transferred to me was that your beliefs shape the kind of feedback you are getting before the light. If you were a Buddhist or Catholic or Fundamentalist, you get a feedback loop of your own stuff. You have a chance to look at it and examine it, but most people do not. "****

I think this is pretty clear, people see in the light what they believe in and reflects their need and level of consciousness. Fundamentalist christians will most likely see jesus or some dude on a throne because this is what they believe in and they know nothing else. Very interesting is also the NDE from a neurologist who was atheistic and first saw nothing only blackness but realised he was still consciousness and eventually had an experience with the light where he fell back on his previously held beliefs from his childhood.
In tibetan buddhism they recognise this to that the light is pure, the first light, pure awareness but if we don't recognise this than we go to the bardo stages.
For me it shows the unity behind all religions and ofcourse oneness and the existence of one god which is everything there is.

I also remember something from a Seth book channeled by Jane Roberts were Seth describes how he assisted somebody in the after life during a near death experience. Anybody remembers this?
I'm not sure anymore how it went but I remember it was pretty funny, something about a guy who had a certain religion but secretly believed that the god of another religion was more powerfull and could crush his god and he was afraid of this. So seth created this play during the afterlife experience so the person could understand the one god concept and have peace. Would be fun to read this again but I'm clueless in which book it was.

Greets,
Filip

>I do think the afterlife is a place where thought can create reality. But, it's not as vague as that. In Monsieur Hugh Benson's Life in the World Unseen, the deceased author (purportedly deceased, of course) states that the afterlife is not a place that's abstract, with every other person creating walls and flowers and volcanos and what have you with their minds.

Benson was writing about the realm that Crookall dubs "Paradise." This is distinct from the "Hades" (or "Bardo") conditions that sometimes apply in the early stages of crossing over. The idea is that some people have to go through the Hades/Bardo realm before getting to the Paradise realm (which is itself not the final stop, but more like a place for R & R).

>Was Helen Duncan that stupid that she thought she could dupe Harry Price and other sitters with something that doesn't even resemble a human being?

Maybe. Have you seen Sylvia Browne on TV? She says the stupidest things imaginable, and she has millions of fans. Anyway, Price's investigation of Duncan leaves little doubt that she was cheating. The photos of the "teleplasm" show clearly that is cloth, replete with frayed edges and stitching, and his analysis of one piece of "teleplasm" (which Duncan produced specifically for testing) showed it to be egg white and paper.

There is also this detail (follow the second link above for the source):

The visit of the Duncans to the National Laboratory had a curious sequel. A Miss Mary McGinlay called on us in February 1932 and told us she had accompanied Mrs. Duncan to London and had acted as maid to her. She said she had some important information for us. She was interviewed by our Council, and her statements were legally drawn up in the form of a Statutory Declaration. On February 22nd, 1932, she attended before a Commissioner for Oaths and made the declaration.

Miss McGinlay's story is an amazing one, and sheds some light on our experiments. She states that she purchased pieces of butter-muslin for Mrs. Duncan and that these pieces "appear to be identical" with those which I photographed at the séances. She recognised tears in the fabric as being the same.

She also declared on oath that after a séance "Mrs. Duncan used to get me to wash out a length of this muslin. The muslin had a rotten smell. It put me in mind of the smell of urine.... She would give it to me just as she had used it, and then it would be much stained and slimy."

On the night of the séance when Mr. Duncan refused to be searched at the National Laboratory, Miss McGinlay met him in the road near the house where they were staying. Mr. Duncan "took a roll of butter-muslin out of his pocket and said that Mrs. Duncan had passed it to him in the street when they had been alone for a few minutes after she had dashed out of the séance-room at the National Laboratory of Psychical Research. He said that the people at the Laboratory had asked him to be searched and that he had made the excuse that his underclothes were very old, etc."

Miss McGinlay concludes: "During the latter period of my stay with Mrs. Duncan in London, I formed the opinion that the lengths of cheese-cloth which I had sometimes washed for Mrs. Duncan had been swallowed by her. The conclusion was forced upon me that the cheese-cloth was swallowed by her and then brought up again during a séance."

Unless Price is lying about every detail of his investigation, I think we have to conclude that Duncan was a fraud, and not a very clever fraud, at that.

Hi Filip - I think the story you referred to is the one about the Arab who hated Jews, but thought Moses was more powerful than Allah. Upon his death he was convinced there would be a battle for his soul, and Seth describes taking part in a staged "battle" to help him through the process. PP 125-126 of Seth Speaks.

It is funny, but also speaks to the power of our expectations.

By the way - did you get the email I sent you last month about book suggestions for your thesis per your request?


>Just because one thing is absurd and might be explained doesn't mean we have to accept all absurdities or that the phenomena has to conform to our limited intellects.

Michael Tymn, I think you present many great posts and blogs, but it is a slippery slope you play on. I know that the "boggle" factor has been brought up many times by mediums and their cohorts, and even recently in the ITC debates. I think, however, that if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it is a duck.

Immediately after my last post here last night, I turned off my computer and went to my bookshelf looking for a particular book on another subject. However, while looking for the book, I noticed "Spirit Teachings" by William Stainton Moses. Even though I have read it several times, I was moved for some reason to pull it off the shelf and open it. It opened to page 283 and the first thing I looked it was something I had highlighted at one time. It was a message from Imperator, Moses' primary control. It read:

"This truth will always be esoteric. It must be so; for only to the soul that is prepared can it be given. Its fragrance is too evanescent for daily common use. Its subtle perfume is shed only in the inner chamber of spirit. Remember this: and remember too that violence is done to Truth by forcing it on unprepared minds, while harm, great and far reaching, is done to those who cannot receive what is revelation to you but not to them."

Michael Tymn: the mastermind in the book the open door states pretty much the same thing about truth. The problem becomes that everyone thinks they know truth. There truth is thee truth and if you challenge their truths they just say you have an unreceptive mind.

Michael P is getting this from victor. Ultra skeptics use this reasoning almost every time someone challenges their cherished paradigms. Everyone that disagrees with you is a dummy and lacks a mind capable of reasoning.

Dr Hora said something to the effect do not share your pearls with unreceptive minds for they will demean them.

Was Helen Duncan a fraud? Maybe it appears she did things that were fraudulent. Was everything she did a fraud? If one lawyer does something that is fraudulent does not mean that everything they do is fraud.

I mean some people consider Margie the medium a fraud and only one time someone found a fingerprint in dental wax was that of the dentist that supplied the dental wax and not Walter’s. Several times the thumbprint was her brother Walter who had passed years before.

Houdini never proved her a fraud. He even designed the cabinet for her to sit in and she still performed. She was able to move scales inside a locked glass container upon requests from sitters and in front of two MIT scientists that had the key to the lock and if I remember right they designed the glass box. And once with photography a finger was seen moving the scale inside the locked glass box.

And she never charged a dime for her séances that lasted several years. She was gagged and had her mouth filled with marbles and water and tied to a chair for what purpose? Money no. Fame? What fame most people look down upon mediums and call them several unflattering names. She originally set out to debunk the entire spiritualist claims of communications with the other side to prove to her husband that it was all fraud.

Also I read in the supreme adventure something that lower level spirits will often come through and pretend to be someone famous. I have read this in several places. Could this explain the southern accent of Houdini’s in DT's séances? Or not?

This book also stated that with physical manifestations it is usually lower level spirits that are manifested, as they are closer to the earth’s physical dimension and these lower level spirits are often very devious and often out right liars.

As someone who has had a NDE at the tender age of 11 (40 years ago) can I just say this....

The NDE experience I had was to date the most profound thing that has ever happened to me and I am now 51.

It proved that I can exist outside of my body. I was totally aware and could see and hear, this was no dreamlike state.

I never saw Jesus, Moses or the Archangel Gabriel despite being a 'Christian' at the time. This event actually stopped me going to church because I realised everything the church had taught me was in error.

As for smoking in the afterlife, that is merely a thought form manifesting, whatever one needs in the early days after passing can be manifested.

It truly was the greatest adventure of my life and if everyone had experienced on this world would be a much more peaceful place.

'Death' is just an illusion

'Death' is just an illusion Posted by: Christine Stewart
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Thank you Christine. Although I personally have never had a near death experience everything I've read leads me to believe that they are "real," meaning that they are what they purport to be, glimpses into some other reality that awaits us all after our souls have learned what they are supposed to learn, or done what they are supposed to do, and shed this physical body and entered the Spiritual Universe.

Dear Art

thank you for your comments on my post. The thing I have learnt is that the spiritual universe you talk of is not 'somewhere else' it is here and now. All around us, its just that the five senses we have do not enable any but the very few (mediums)to access that. We are not bodies that have a spirit raher we are spirit that inhabits a physical body for the brief sojourn to the physical world that we call 'life' in order to gain experience. There is nothing supernatural about it, in fact its all very natural.

There is no death, just a sloughing off of our physical body as we enter a different phase in our life.The easiest way to describe it is to use the analogy of the chrysalis becoming a butterfly.

NDE's give us only a glimpse of what is to come and once that has been glimpsed nothing is ever the same again!

Dear Art,

When I was 20yrs old I had a NDE experience. At the time I knew nothing about the phenomena, nor did my family and closest friends and it was many years later I heard about others who had similar experiences. My experience was unique in that I was not near death, I went to sleep in my bed and had a dream NDE with tunnel, light, beings, a counsel session, being shown a city and then reading knowledge/info on big white board paper held by the guide who was with me throughtout NDE. After awakening from the first experience, I wanted desperately to go back as I had never felt such love and peace like what I experienced in this state, as I drifted back to sleep I managed again to re enter the NDE state immediately, find myself in the tunnel and travelling it again, I reached the wall of multi coloured lights as I did the first time but I couldnt go through it again to the other side, I found myself instantly travelling backwards down the tunnel and being awoken a second time. I told family and friends at the time, all the vivid details as I was certain I went somewhere but they found it to incredible to believe and dismissed it. Also at the time and before the NDE I was experiencing paranormal activities in my folks home and my general disposition was fearful, especially at night in my room. I somehow think it may have contributed to the NDE I had.

Michael H writes: "If I mention Keith Augustine or Richard Dawkins, at what point does “happy, peaceful, contented person” come to mind?"

I believe I have an advantage over Michael H in that I have actually met Keith Augustine on several occasions, and I certainly appears to be a happy, peaceful, and contented person, as well as intelligent and interesting to talk to. BTW, he is now publishing a series of articles in the Journal of Near-Death Studies, along with critiques from the leading researchers in the field and his responses. Those interested in this subject, whether skeptical or convinced that NDEs are solid evidence of survival, should be well-served by reading the exchange of arguments and evidence.

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