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Quoted from Bill :

"So to answer Michael's question I would prefer better life satisfaction, but I will not lie to myself with wishful thinking. I accept we are alone, when we are dead that is it, there is no happy afterlife or magical God to help us. Right now there is little happiness in my life.

Obviously a part of me would like an afterlife to be true, as I would like to end myself right now like I am sure many other sufferers would, if there was a guaranteed afterlife, because this world right here is real pain. That is why I still look over some of them in detail but I can't fool myself I am afraid into believing it anymore but I don't personally attack people "

Dear me, Bill, what are we going to do with you.... I'm sorry to hear you are suffering. Obviously I don't know you and your various posts haven't exactly made my bow tie spin but the evidence for survival is very persuasive, that is, if you actually look at it with an open mind.

Personally, I am as convinced that there is an afterlife (and a before life) as you are convinced there is nothing and my certainty (irritating to some) is based on personal memories plus decades of examining the data. One of us is wrong but if it's me, I will never know, will I.

It is my firm belief that unless ono is bi-polar or schizophrenic then prescription medication is unnecessary, even harmful, except perhaps for a very short spell.

Some fifteen years ago, after a period of extreme psychological stress, I was diagnosed with severe clinical depression. After lengthy consultation with my MD (who is very experienced in that field) we decided to go for SSRI antidepressants and forego the therapy as he felt I thoroughly understood the reasons/cause of my depression.

After a few months I dispensed with the antidepressants, increased the time I spent engaged in activities outdoors, and started taking a high-strength turmeric supplement. Since that decision I have never looked back. Moreover, I take no prescription drugs whatsoever. Admittedly, that has always been my preferred choice.

Very recently I came across Dr Joe Dispenza's book, 'You Are the Placebo: Making Your Mind Matter'. In it he explains what I had already come to understand from experience. I advise any and everyone to consider what he has to say before going down the pharmaceutical route.

Similarly useful books are, Dr. Lissa Rankin's book. 'Mind Over Medicine' and Dr. Bruce Lipton's 'The Biology of Belief'. But in terms of readability, I prefer Dispenza's book.

I urge everyone to read these books. Aside from 'Life and How to Survive It' by Robin Skynner and John Cleese, they are the most valuable therapeutic guides I have ever found.

Ps. For 'ono' read 'one'. :)


You really, really need to be more careful about shooting from the lip from Wikipedia, or from any source cited there to do with psi matters - WITHOUT CHECKING THE ACCURACY FOR YOURSELF FIRST. That pertains especially to any source quoted there originally published by Prometheus and (especially) to do with the R101 case.

Last year I was asked by 'Light' magazine to reappraise the case after the almost mythical report into it by the late Archie Jarman became available for public viewing at Senate House in London for the first time. It had been stashed away as part of the Eric Dingwall Collection for many years. Jarman had sent it to Dingwall (who was a close friend of both Jarman and Eileen Garrett) for 'safekeeping', after Garrett (who had commissioned it) had declined to publish - and Jarman had spent months researching it for her in 1962/3. I found that Jarman had lied to Garrett, telling her that he had destroyed it (he admits this in a letter to Dingwall contained in the files). He further stipulated to Dingwall that it should not be released until certain participants in the case had died.

For that reason, I'm sure, various sceptical commentators had assumed that Jarman's report contained something damning to the paranormal interpretation of the case. John G. Fuller appears to have done the opposite. I have to admit that, because of Jarman's track record of being extremely critical of psi research (like his friends Dingwall, and Trevor Hall), I just took it for granted that the former would probably be the truth. I turned out to be hopelessly wrong. Fuller, as it turned out, was pretty close to the truth - despite Jarman's protestations to the contrary.

Like you may have done, I read the Wikipedia article about the case. This was before I'd seen the 'Jarman Report' myself. Despite my own scepticism about Fuller's account, my suspicions were aroused by the following: -

'"Archie Jarman who had interviewed witnesses wrote an 80,000-word report on the case concluded the séance information was valueless and that we should "best forget the psychic side of R-101; it's a dead duck— absolutely!"'

Why was I suspicious?

Firstly, I had extreme doubts about whether anyone had had access to Jarman's report up to that point. So, although the Wiki quote could be read as having come from it, that struck me as being extremely unlikely. Secondly, I recognised the 'dead duck' phrase as actually having come from an article that Jarman had written for 'Alpha' magazine (Jan-Feb, 1980, p.12), wherein he had lacerated John G. Fuller for allegedly misrepresenting his views on the case (guilty, as charged, I'd say - but only just - if one were to be really pedantic about it). Thirdly, in that Alpha article Jarman (in a rather confusing, self-contradictory mode), had also written that his report '…concluded that the source of Eileen's "message" was a mystery…Perhaps the medium obtained information telepathically from some sitter…or…perhaps the shock of violent death drives the victim to inconsistency or insanity'. Fourthly, the reference cited was from 'Investigating the Unexplained' by Melvin Harris, published by (surprise, surprise), Prometheus Books.

You're absolutely correct about John Booth's book (again published by Prometheus and cited, in typically witless fashion, on Wikipedia). Certainly his brief piece about the R101 qualifies as unmitigated drivel, in my view - he doesn't even get the date of the disaster correct. But I still expected Harris' effort to be a lot better. I remembered him from my youth as being a moderately well known writer and broadcaster, who would pop up on TV, and in print, every now and then to comment dismissively about various popular 'mysteries'.

But by the time I got hold of Harris' book (still in advance of having read Jarman's report) I'd already done a large amount of research into the 'normal' aspects of the R101 disaster.

I knew straight away, therefore, that Harris' claim that there was nothing 'secret' about the R101 project was nonsense because two contemporary experts (Neville Shute - Chief Calculator and Senior Designer of the rival R100 - see his 1954 book 'Slide Rule'), and E.F. Spanner (Naval Architect, engineer, and public critic of the British Airship Program) had complained loudly about exactly that; Spanner doing so while R101 was being designed, built and trialled. In answer to the latter's criticisms, (see Spanner's 1927 book 'This Airship Business' p.78.) Wing Commander Thomas Reginald Cave Brown Cave, a senior member of the R101 design team, even retorted 'Is it customary to publish details of a new battleship or liner when she is being built?' In fact Spanner devoted a whole chapter to the 'secrecy' surrounding R101 in that particular book.

Ironically, Cave Brown Cave was one of the 'experts' mentioned by Harris. He had been largely responsible for deciding to fit the disastrously over-weight and under-powered diesel engines that contributed to the tragedy - as correctly identified at the séances. The other was Wing Commander Ralph Booth who was Captain of the R100.

Indeed, the complaint was that the R100 team and Spanner could only GUESS about the R101's design from patent specifications. The Air Ministry only released extremely trivial details to the popular press in advance of the disaster and Spanner complained that even details given to specialist magazines (and at official Air Ministry lectures) were technically inaccurate, ill informed and shallow (e.g. 'Gentlemen Prefer Aeroplanes', 1928, p.391.)

But, to read Harris, you would think that only those directly associated with the paranormal aspects of the case had claimed that technical details of the R101 development program were kept 'secret' in the way suggested by him. They did not - at all. The idea was entirely a straw man fantasy created by Harris himself. The idea of 'secrecy', as I have shown, came from technical experts of the period. Although Harris does mention Shute, he could not have read his book 'properly' as he does not detail the full nature of his complaints. He does not mention Spanner at all, and he was more famous at the time for the objecting to 'secrecy'.

The most questionable aspect of Harris' piece, though, is that you could be forgiven for believing that he is quoting directly from Jarman's report, or quoting him verbatim from conversation. Perhaps rather artfully, Harris does not tell the reader that he is quoting Jarman ENTIRELY from the Alpha article and is (rather stupidly) leaving out statements from Jarman in that piece, such as the example already given, that might suggest that the actual report had anything positive to say about a paranormal interpretation of the case. Another good example would be Jarman's statement that the 'number of experts' you refer to (there were actually two, see above) were 'somewhat biased'. Jarman is a lot less polite about that in his report - especially regarding Cave Brown Cave. One reason Garrett would have been mad to have published Jarman's opus in the form she received it from him (before returning it), is that he lays into his own expert witnesses (Cave and Booth), and practically everyone else of importance (still living at the time) connected to the case, whether or not they were 'pro' or 'con' as to the question of paranormality. In fact he criticises virtually everyone except himself and, ironically, Garrett. So she would have been inviting several libel actions if she had published it.

Still, you give the impression that you actually have Harris' book. You can't be blamed for not knowing about the 'Alpha' article - if, indeed, that is the case. But, surely you must have noticed that, although Harris claims to have spoken to Jarman shortly before his death, he does not actually quote him when he states, in summing up, 'Archie Jarman had no hesitation in dismissing the séance material as valueless'. Don't you find that rather suspicious? As a self-professed 'critical thinker', didn't that set any alarm bells going inside your head? It certainly did in mine, even before I received the actual report.

The truth is that, in his report, Jarman rejected the later Villiers séances as being virtually worthless (for very sound reasons, in my opinion). That's fine. But, again, that much is stated in 'Alpha'.

In the actual report Jarman states practically the exact opposite to almost everything that Harris claims he did with regard to the original alleged communication by the deceased Captain of R101, (Flight Lt. Herbert Carmichael Irwin) given via Garrett at the original séance arranged by Harry Price. This, as you should know, was held only a couple of days after the disaster - before the Official Inquiry had begun, and before speculation in the press as to the cause of the tragedy was becoming more informed. And Harris is factually incomplete or ignorant, in some respect, about almost everything else that he 'researched' on his own.

I obviously do not have the space to detail every one of the bloopers in Harris' highly questionable piece here. You'll have to consult my full article in the Spring 2015 edition of 'Light' for more, and there wasn't enough room even there to convey adequately the baleful inadequacy of it as a critique. You could also, maybe, consult Alan Murdie's commentary on my article in the May 2015 edition of 'Fortean Times'.

For now, I'll just leave you with this: -

Melvin Harris (p.176. of his book), on Jarman's report: 'He interviewed witnesses and drew up an exhaustive 80,000 word report…His findings were devastating'.

Archie Jarman (from the actual report's conclusions, p.412 - 412a): 'I am confident that Mrs Garrett gained her information in a paranormal manner. The technical information given at the Price Sitting was too orderly and sensible and devoid of absurdities to have emanated from her own brain, since she is quite ignorant of technical matters as displayed'.

Archie Jarman was an experienced pilot, by the way. Although, apparently, Harris did his National Service is the RAF, I haven't seen it mentioned that he was similarly qualified to comment on the technical aspects of the case.

"It is my firm belief that unless one is bi-polar or schizophrenic then prescription medication is unnecessary, even harmful, except perhaps for a very short spell."

That hasn't been my experience, but as I said, everyone is different. It's a mistake, I think, to make blanket statements about the right kind of therapy. Medications work differently for different people. That's why I don't think it's a good idea to take medical advice from strangers on the Internet (including me!). Our advice, while well-meaning, is usually more anecdotal than scientific.

The only advice I ever give is to see a medical specialist and to be open to whatever course of treatment is suggested.

In any event, Bill said he is manic-depressive, i.e. bipolar, so even by Julie's more stringent criteria, he might still benefit from meds.

Steve, thanks for all that great info. I'm glad to know that somebody somewhere has read the elusive Jarman report!

"In any event, Bill said he is manic-depressive, i.e. bipolar, so even by Julie's more stringent criteria, he might still benefit from meds."

Doesn't that follow naturally from what I said, Michael? That aside, of course everyone is free to decide these matters for themselves. But, as the literature I cited explains, there are also alternative - properly researched - remedies and, perhaps more importantly, alternative psychological approaches. Science can be very dogmatic, even medical science. Or hadn't you noticed? ;)

We have a lot of experience of bipolar in our family - Bill, you have my sympathy!

A relevant book has just gone on sale for $2 as an e-book on Amazon, "Nutrient Power: Heal Your Biochemistry and Heal Your Brain". I haven't read it yet. It has a 4.5 star rating.

Didn't say it earlier Bill but you got my sympathy too.

Hello again.

I just realised that I missed some of the previous comments on the R101. You’re very welcome, Michael, BTW.

So, just to answer a few questions that were raised.

In my opinion, Jarman did a superb job with his report. As a critique of the case it is extremely penetrating, insightful and, for the most part, his contentions are very well argued. It is a fascinating collection of documents, and some of Jarman’s comments, in relation to the personalities involved, I found to be rib-achingly funny. I re-checked as many of his facts as I could (and some issues that he didn’t cover in relation to them – just in case) and, in the main, they are correct. Quite an achievement given that he managed it all over the space of just a few months in the pre-internet age.

I agree with Jarman’s claim that published press details about the R101, especially in the context of what was actually said at the Price séance about the tragedy, were inadequate (‘meagre’ was the word that Jarman used) to explain what ‘Irwin’ came out with via Garrett. Although it’s too long a story to relate fully here, that goes for the more specialist publications as well. Although, to be sure, SOME of the concepts and terms were covered (most notably by E.F. Spanner, who actually warned of a British airship tragedy), what is missing from the pre-disaster press accounts is the context of what actually happened, and the terms used. In the main, that could be said of the press accounts published between the tragedy and the Price séance, also.

For example, I did not see the term ‘disposable lift’ used once in any publication of the time. Spanner uses the term ‘ballast’ (much less nuanced and specialized), throughout.

The term ‘strakes’, although it is used with ubiquity in relation to modern airships, must have been incredibly obscure airship slang at the time. The only use of it (vaguely contemporary to the period, in relation to airships) I could find was in an issue of ‘Popular Science’ from April 1916. This was an American publication that may not have been available in the UK then. If my memory serves me correctly, I could not even find any issues in the British Library dating from before the 1920’s. I concluded, though not in my article, that use of the term had ‘cross-pollinated’ from American airship personnel who had co-operated closely with the British on a number of projects. Yet the context of the term’s use at the Price séance, again, is absolutely correct for airships; ‘starboard strakes started’ means that a strut, or girder, on the starboard side ‘started’ – or (according to an obscure, probably naval, usage of ‘start’ from the Oxford Dictionary), sprang from its proper place. Spanner’s persuasive post disaster analysis (‘The Tragedy of the R.101’, 1931) concluded, in opposition to the Official Inquiry, that R101 had, indeed, suffered structural failure (which would not have been apparent from the ground) shortly before touching down relatively gently and exploding.

So much for Melvin Harris’ contention that the terms used at the séance were ‘commonplace’.

One of the few points that I would disagree with Jarman on is that his primary paranormal explanation for Garret’s information is tenable. This was that the journalist at the Price séance, Ian Coster, unwittingly provided the details via ESP. Jarman thought it feasible that, in the space less than 60 hours, Coster (who Jarman says was writing for the ‘London Evening Standard’ at that point) had managed to interview experts at the R101’s base at Cardington (about 60 miles north of central London); travel all the way to the crash site in France; view the scene and interview witnesses there (stopping off to fill up with petrol at Achy – the hamlet famously referred to by ‘Irwin’); and then make it all of the way back to London in time for the séance. Jarman mentions, as I pointed out in my ‘Light’ article, that if that were the case, one could have expected the details given by ‘Irwin’ via Garrett to have appeared in recognisable form in ‘The Standard’ on either October 6, or the 7th. They didn’t, as far as I could see.

Jarman stated that ‘If Coster is eliminated, we have to consider seriously whether Mrs Garrett was in communication with the discarnate “Irwin”…’ He did not seem to think that Coster had been eliminated. I disagree. But, (like Michael – I did cite your article too), I do not believe that the R101 case counts as ‘proof’ of survival. No single spontaneous case of this ilk can do that on its own, in my opinion.

True, Melvin Harris did CLAIM to have been in contact with Jarman before his death. But if he was, then (as I have already shown) he could not have discussed the case with him in any depth at all, and it must have been VERY shortly before Jarman died.

The 1970 publication referred to, wherein Jarman was rather more enthusiastic about the survivalist interpretation of the case was, almost certainly, an obituary for Garrett in ‘Psychic News’ (‘This Case is Unique in Psychic History’, Archie Jarman, ‘Psychic News’, Sept 26, 1970 p.11.). I find it rather difficult to believe that Jarman had discovered any further information to justify changing his opinion between his Alpha article in 1980 and (maybe) communicating with Harris. This is, firstly, because Jarman had known Garrett so well since the 1930’s (Garrett knew the Jarman family before even that); but, secondly, if he had, then Harris would surely not have had, to all appearances, hide the fact that he was only cherry picking Jarman’s ‘Alpha’ article without naming that as his source. He does, after all name all of his other, less important, sources.

The SPR does not do any study as a corporate body in the sense that Bill seems to mean. But it is true that (coincidentally) I was asked to do, effectively, what Bill suggests, by another SPR (and College of Psychic Studies) member. That said, it is important to emphasise that my analysis does not represent any ‘official’ SPR view. And the same could be said of Jarman’s views, also. Jarman also refers to files in the SPR archives collated by Mrs K.M. Goldney, who interviewed Charlton and other (anonymous) personnel from the R101’s Cardington base on their visit to Price’s lab (in his absence). This was after extremely brief details of the séance had been published and that had evoked interest at the base. Goldney appears to have suspected that Price might have altered the séance transcripts (particularly in relation to mention of Achy) as, much later, she also cross-examined Price’s stenographer who did not think that was the case. Indeed, Goldney, (who Jarman seems to have detested) was still in communication with one of the major case witnesses (Major Villiers) at the time that Jarman was writing the report. So the SPR files on the case, which I have not yet had time to consult directly, are probably quite extensive.

Great summary Steve - thank you.

on fairies ->

Graham Hancock: Elves, Aliens, Angels and Ayahuasca

As always not saying it's the definitive truth but it is interesting (to me anyway) how this realm of DMT-space fits into the NDE narrative.

Another Hancock lecture on Gnosticism & Duality ->

Hey, guys. I have a similar problem to Bill here in that I have pretty serious mental health issues and a gnawing nihilistic feeling. Reading here helps me feel like I'm not stupid or crazy for wanting hope or thinking it might be possible. I'm not going to be able to actually believe until I experience something, but hope's not far off from faith. Just thought you may want to know you're helping.

Also, this springs to mind:

I'd like to say I'm in a similar position to chel and Bill. Well, I don't have nihilistic tendencies, but I do have pretty severe anxiety, so I worry about death and the beyond a lot. This blog makes me feel better and gives me hope. Seeing you rational folks calmly discussing the evidence and formulating theories as to how it all works...reading it all makes my hope a little stronger and makes me want to believe, and feel less absurd when I do.

Hi Lin - yeah, you're not alone. In my case it's just sometimes really hard to imagine I'm anything but an abnormally complicated pile of billiard-balls, to use the common Newtonian metaphor, which is actually an improvement on my self-esteem a lot of the time :(

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