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The beginning of Radin's recent book Real Magic: Ancient Wisdom, Modern Science, and a Guide to the Secret Power of the Universe is an example of a quirky academic tongue-in-cheek humor that might be characteristic of Dean Radin. It is in the preface to the book and Radin would have us imagine that it is taken from a "Guest Editorial" of the 'New Seattle Province' (get the humor there) written 900 years in the future in 2915 in which were comments about a recently discovered digital relic from the twenty-third century written in "Galactia Today"

Perhaps beginning the book with that fabrication was not the best way to impress serious people who might want to read this book , but once one gets into Chapter One it becomes clear that Dean Radin is now speaking---not some fictitious newspaper editor from the "American Northwest" in the year 2915. It is a bit confusing but that bit of fluff at the beginning has little or nothing to do with Dean Radin's serious thoughts about parapsychology, i.e. magic, and consciousness which he discusses in the rest of the book. Radin's use of the word 'magic" throughout the book can be misleading when he really defines it thusly:

"Real magic falls into three categories; mental influence of the physical world, perception of events distant in space or time, and interactions with nonphysical entities. The first type I'll call force of will; it's associated with spell-casting and other techniques meant to intentionally influence events or actions. The second is divination; it's associated with practices such as reading Tarot cards and mirror-gazing. The third is theurgy, from the Greek meaning "god-work"; it involves methods for evoking and communicating with spirits. "

This seems like an interesting book which I need to order. - AOD

I get that the presentation is tongue-in-cheek, but the message seems to be serious: that the world is facing a terrible confluence of crises, and "real magic" may be our only hope.

To me, it was a turnoff, but the book has received good reviews and appears to be selling well, so I guess other people didn’t find the preface off-putting.

I still intend to read Rral Magic when I have the time.

I'd argue that we already have creepy little snots running the world anyway! I tend to think human history has just been a string of decent people doggedly trying to improve the human condition (or at least make it more comfortable), but whose good work is routinely overthrown by the bad apples, and that this will continue forever, sigh.

My only upside to this is that I am pretty much much convinced that there is an afterlife, from my own personal experiences and from others, particularly NDEs.

Also, that first bit about supernatural experiences in and around the battlefield, reminded me of the famous "Angels of Mons" story about British archers from centuries ago protecting British soldiers in a World War I battle. The Wikipedia entry on this one is pretty interesting:

I cringed when I heard the title "Real Magic". I think it is in danger of scaring off those who would most benefit by the content of the book.

I want Dean Radin to help educate the well-intended materialist scientists who have a deep-seated bias and misunderstanding about paranormal research. The word "Magic" in the title, to me, is potentially an instant turn-off word for many members of the scientific materialist establishment.

The LAST thing I would endorse is ANY hint or intimation of woo, regardless of the intention behind the word. I would prefer a more sober, safe, staid title, not using the word "Magic".

This reminds me of going on a sales call to an important potential client. One is well advised to play it very safe and wear respectable middle-of-the-road businesswear, not a tie-dyed shirt and sandals. One runs the grave risk of getting rejected at first glance if one gets too "out there".

Imagine the visceral reaction of a James Randi-type Skeptic upon hearing that Dean Radin's latest book has "Magic" in the title. The hooting and derision would begin before the first word was read.

I have read some of the one-star reviews and others of Radin’s book and some of them apparently were looking for an explanation of how to do magic tricks, perhaps using a magic wand. If they had only read the very first paragraph in ‘Chapter One’ (easily available on Amazon) they would have read Radin’s disclaimer as follows:

“This book is about magic.

Not the fictional magic of Harry Potter, the feigned magic of Harry Houdini, or the fraudulent magic of con artists. Not blue lightning bolts springing from the fingertips, aerial combat on broomsticks, sleight-of-hand tricks, or any of the other elaborations of artistic license and special effects.

This is about real magic.”

after which Radin goes on to define the magic he will be discussing in the book (previously quoted above).

Still somewhat confusing I agree but Radin’s use (or his publisher’s use) of ‘magic’ in the title of the book and Radin’s constant use of that word in the text probably is off-putting to many people, especially of the ‘scientific’ type. That is unfortunate since Radin has some important things to say, especially to the scientific community and ‘magic’ gives ‘Skeptics’ a hook to hang their derisive hats on. Unfortunately Radin’s concept of trying to bring parapsychological things down to ‘street level’ was perhaps a poor concept for his book from the get-go. If he had left ‘magic’ out of the title and just used the subtitle “Ancient Wisdom, Modern Science, and a Guide to the Secret Power of the Universe” maybe it would have been better received---but, maybe not, as more than 80% of the reviews are favorable five-star reviews of the book titled as it is.

I think that Radin’s way of thinking is not mainstream. He does make associations which are sometimes difficult to grasp and maybe he is a little flippant at times but fortunately he has a ready sense of humor but which also is sometimes a little off-the-wall requiring a little mulling around in one’s mind so Radin is not a ‘quick read’, it takes time to absorb what he is saying. One has to think about it or “deal with it” as he said at the end of the book. - AOD

My objection to the title is that "magic" is a specific concept with a history, and it *is* real. It is ritualized intention, and it does have an effect on the world. Radin probably doesn't believe that such magic actually exists, so he is calling everything paranormal "magic." It's sloppy thinking and writing. I'm sure the book has good information in it, but it's going to muddy the waters a bit too in the process.

I'd like to reiterate here that it doesn't have to be either "all true or all lies." If even some of it is true it is life changing and has amazing implications about who and what we are and why we are here.

Like William James said "it only takes one white crow to prove that not all crows are black."

Wow, Art you found the white crow! (And what a weird-looking thing it is.)

BTW, I thought it my duty to report, in very trying circumstances, that I received a first-hand account of an NDE from someone who never believed in them and argued with me against them. He now says they are the real thing. I almost fell out of my chair at the hospital as he presented an in-depth account - of a soothing experience being greeted by a friendly spirit and more. The circumstances don't enable me to press him for more, but I can say I was quite surprised.

Tonight on the History Channel, In Search Of with Zachary Quinto, they are going to be talking about "Life After Death." It comes on at 9:00 pm Central time. I don't know if it will be interesting and good or not but I am planning on watching. I hope it is interesting...

Okay, I watched Zachary Quinto on In Search Of. I didn't care for the part about cryogenically freezing people and wasn't all that impressed with the EVP segment but he did okay with the near death experience. And also they talked about increasing longevity with drugs and used mice as examples... which to me isn't life after death related. One other thing, people donating their bodies so they can harvest parts was creepy. They got a whole company that specializes in taking bodies apart and selling them to researchers and schools and stuff. It was rather gross.

I was disappointed that Mr. Quinto didn't talk about deathbed visions and nearing death awareness. I think if he had spent some time reading up about deathbed visions he would have been blown away.

One other thing that amazes me too is terminal lucidity. I have now met two people who told me personal stories about their relatives "waking up" right before they die, becoming lucid, and remembering who they were, talking and telling them they loved them, and then right afterwards laying their heads back down on their pillow and dying. One is a woman at our church whose brother hadn't spoken in couple of years woke up and had a conversation with her, and the other guy was a Methodist minister that I met at a hospital and he told me about his mother, who had alzheimers, and she woke up and talked to him, and then she died right afterwards. Two people fairly close together shared terminal lucidity stories with me.

I’m sure Quinto just reads whatever's on the TelePrompTer. It’s not like he writes the script.

Yeah, and I really don't know how interested in this stuff he really is? He might just be trying to cash in on his Spock character on the new Star Trek movies so someone offered him a job hosting In Search Of and he said sure because it was a job?

So, I wanted to write Zachary Quinto and ask him if he knew about Deathbed Visions and nearing death awareness and realized it was a ridiculous and pointless idea and talked myself out of it. Or how about recommending he read Final Gifts by Maggie Callanan and Visions, Trips, and Crowded Rooms by David Kessler?

So, if you missed In Search Of last Friday night and you are interested in life after death stuff... you didn't miss much, and if you have read anything about NDEs, etc. more than likely you know more than what little was presented.

Art, I agree that accounts of terminal lucidity can be moving. Even this self-styled "radical rationalist" writing in Scientific American, no less, gets emotional when he remembers how his grandmother came alive in her final moments:

He also describes what seems almost certain to be a precognitive dream, involving a dog. But I think Michael has some experience with pd’s that features animals—though not always friendly ones. :)

I've had several precognitive dreams that have come true. Some amazing ones. In fact once I dreamed that some terrorists were trying to blow up a dam and when I woke up I called the FBI in Knoxville, TN and said to them "You may think I'm nuts but last night I dreamed that some terrorists are trying to blow up a dam."

The FBI told me they didn't think I was nuts and I guess they put the word out because the next week they caught two Egyptians up at Norris Dam which was only 7 miles from our house up there taking pictures of the Dam at 5:30 in the morning. A park ranger confronted them and asked them what they were doing. Turns out their I.D. was fake and they had fraudulent driver's licenses from North Carolina. They were also in the country illegally. I don't know what happened to them after that.

I also dreamed about the last space shuttle that blew up a week before it happened. I even wrote a post about on the message board. I dreamed it blew up and pieces of it landed in our backyard. I went inside to get my camera to take pictures of it but by the time I got back outside the Feds were already there cleaning it up and didn't want me taking pictures. And that is pretty much what happened except it blew up over Texas and Louisiana and it landed in other people's backyards instead of mine. Anyway, right after I had the dream I posted about it and the next week it blew up!

And there was a bridge collapse on I-40 in Oklahoma. I dreamed the week before that I saw a boat of some kind hit a bridge abutment and it collapsed and the bridge collapsed. The next week a bridge in Oklahoma collapsed.

Interesting, Art! I haven’t had any precognitive dreams as impressive as those. It’s interesting that the authorities took your tip seriously. I suspect that many law-enforcement officers pay more attention to ESP-related tips then they will admit publicly, for fear of ridicule.

Those dreams of yours are pretty impressive. I hope you are keeping good documentation of your dreams just in case more of them turn out to be precognitive. - AOD

On the subject of PDs, you should pick up the classic work 'An Experiment with Time', by the British soldier, aeronautical engineer and philosopher J. W. Dunne.

Dunne realised that many of his precognitive dreams were not in fact precognitions of the event itself, but rather the *media reportage of the event*. He realised this when after one such precognitive dream about a disaster, he recognised the image in the newspaper - the image was the same image which he had witnessed in his dream.

Interesting stuff? This points to the collective consciousness and the impact of these events to our awareness via the media. This impact can send ripples back in time.

The researcher Anthony Peake also writes about this, and references Dunne's work in particular.



There seems to be a link between the emotion the event evokes and whether I might "think about it" before it actually happens? I remember one time I was at a dinner my wife's soccer league had at a Chinese buffet and they were giving out door prizes. We all had tickets. I was looking at my ticket and I knew that the next number they would read out would be our number. It was "a knowing." What we won were 2 free dinners to that same Chinese Buffet.

Also one time I was doing dishes, sort of zoning out while staring out the window over the sink, and a voice sort of popped into my head and seemed to say "Bonnie (my wife) is going to come in here and say "thanks for going with me." Earlier that day we had gone to a meeting in town, which was about 45 minutes away, and I had gone with her. So in about a minute my wife walked into the kitchen and said "thanks for going with me." It was the exact words that had popped into my head.

Another time we were sitting in church and I all of a sudden I mumbled "that's a hard act to follow" and as our song leader was walking down the aisle to the front of the church he said "that's a hard act to follow." Our preacher, Darryl, who always sits in front of us, turned around to me and said "how do you do that?"

The truth is I don't know how I do it but sometimes I just "know" a few seconds before hand what is fixing to happen? I buy lottery tickets and I check the numbers on the computer at night. Oftentimes as I am getting on the computer and fixing to check my numbers I'll know, sort of a feeling, whether I won anything or not? I think the emotion of the event, that I'm fixing to experience, sort of gives me a heads up beforehand whether I'm going to win or not? Sort of along the same lines of when we won those two free dinners at that Chinese buffet?

I told our preacher once that they didn't want me teaching any classes, like middle or high school, sunday school classes to kids because I have all kinds of weird beliefs that aren't exactly kosher in the Church of Christ. Don't worry, our preacher knows about my kooky beliefs. He knows I believe in NDEs, deathbed visions, nearing death awareness, some mystical and transcendental experience, and of course the holographic universe theory and quantum physics and its connection to NDEs and DBVs. {grin}

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