Monday, September 21, 2009


There are many subjects that I know little about [especially as far as what is really going on with them] but this is one of the worst. Still, "we're all friends here", so why not just stumble in and see if there's anything to see. The subject is "haunted houses". The first trouble with this is that a lot of things are put under this label which don't seem, necessarily to be like one another. For instance, there are places where there seem to be "apparitions" but no physical activities. There are other places where there the "agents" seem delighted to throw books off shelves and hide your jewelry, but never show themselves. And there are places where it seems both go on. Within each "class" of phenomenon, there are widely different "observables" as well. The first question of the "rookie" is then: how many kinds of anomalies am I dealing with? The house at the left is the famous Borley rectory. It's basically a "poltergeist" house. Lots of stuff flying around [once upon a time; I believe that it has been leveled now] including the odd brick. The House may have claims of someone seeing apparitions occasionally, which would make most people call it a "haunted" house. The stone below the Borley picture is from an alleged "rock-throwing" poltergeist. To make matters worse, some percipients claim to have seen the stones actually "materialize" in the air and then fall. This stretches me near to my quite liberal breaking point, but I'm at least still listening. The photo at the bottom purports to be of the "Brown Lady" of Raynham Hall and would be classed as an apparition and not a Poltergeist, unless she got up to physical mischief. Yet, she is called "ghost", too. Should we lump all this stuff together or split it? --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Folks argue both ways. One of the most prominent splitters has been Dr. William Roll. He investigates "poltergeists". I read his book and he had me seriously considering that these anomalies were caused by psychokinetic bursts of energy
[unconsciously] from humans who were having particularly stressful times in their lives. For some reason he focussed on teenage girls as the likeliest candidates for the unhappy stressed-out person. That felt bogus to me, but what did I know? As time has passed, my feeling is that Roll, smart as he is, is wrong. I don't doubt that teenagers are capable of faking things like this, but the genuine cases seem to me to be the products of the spirit world rather than the mundane one. The main reason that I feel that is again due to my remarkable family. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I am eldest of seven siblings, every one of whom is a "talent". They are perceptive and, as Catholics, open to the spiritual and, along with that, the unusual in general. They tend to marry similar people. They constitute a reservoir of interesting experiences, which they pass on to me. One of them lives in a haunted house. Many, many instances of what we would call a "poltergeist" event have occurred, with or without a teenage girl [or any such person] as a candidate. But there's more to it than that. There are occasional "apparitional" events as well [though rarer]. They have been experienced by several people of all ages, but the largest number have been by a young girl. This is a remarkable girl. She was born with a nearly uncountable number of physical difficulties requiring a similar number of hospitalizations and special care. Today, she is one of happiest members of God's creation [at least usually--she's still a little girl afterall] that I know. Healthy within her scope, and smart in a unique hard-to-describe way. She, either due to herself or to the wonderfully loving way she was brought up, lives more exactly "in the moment" than any person I have ever known. And this is what I think is going on with her ability to experience the phenomena of the house moreso than we "objective" folks can manage. As Wilde Shamrocs said in his prose poem: you cannot see through the barriers as long as YOU create the barrier--you cannot experience the "other" if you keep the world strongly "at arm's length". You have to be "in the moment", right now, if you expect to fully see. As a prof, trained my whole career in objective distancing, I'm particularly crippled at this. Thankfully, others are not and can tell me about it. [once in the classroom, a student group had hung around after class asking about wild and wooly things, and I responded that if I involved myself in experiences in certain ways I couldn't honestly say what in fact I WAS involved in. The group's verbal leader looked me straight in the eye and said: Well, WE'RE in it; YOU keep track of it. Somehow that made me very sad]. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ What the little girl has to do with "knock knock" is this: she sees the "spirits"/ghosts/??? frequently. She particularly interacts with one of them, a little boy near her own age. She has a name for him. Research on the old-time former residents has located the names of a large number of them [this is a historical house] and some of them seem to be the characters who still hang around. [or whatever the relation is between the poltergeist agents and those old residents]. But, there was no record for a young boy with the name given by the young girl who interacts with him. But recently there has been a development. An interview with an old relative of the historical family has revealed for the first time that the young boy was seldom called by his given name, but by a certain nickname--the name long used to describe him by the young girl. She couldn't have known this, unless she got the information the "old-fashioned" way--he told her. Teenage psychokinesis is not what's operating in that house. Something spiritual is. Some spiritual entities who either ARE ,or are imitating, the former residents. We still can't say which. But, maybe we are on the trail. KNOCK KNOCK Who's There?

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