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Things that go bump in the night

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Len of the Chilterns

Len of the Chilterns Report 28 Jun 2008 21:22

Carl Jung (cont.)
As I approached the steps leading up to the entrance into the rock, a strange thing happened: I had the feeling that everything was being sloughed away; everything I aimed at or wished for or thought, the whole phantasmagoria of earthly existence, fell away or was stripped from me - an extremely painful process. Nevertheless something remained; it was as if I now carried along with me everything I had ever experienced or done, everything that had happened around me. I might also say: it was with me, and I was it. I consisted of all that, so to speak. I consisted of my own history and I felt with great certainty: this is what I am. I am this bundle of what has been and what has been accomplished.
This experience gave me a feeling of extreme poverty, but at the same time of great fullness. There was no longer anything I wanted or desired. I existed in an objective form; I was what I had been and lived. At first the sense of annihilation predominated, of having been stripped or pillaged; but suddenly that became of no consequence.
Everything seemed to be past; what remained was a "fait accompli", without any reference back to what had been. There was no longer any regret that something had dropped away or been taken away. On the contrary: I had everything that I was, and that was everything.

Something else engaged my attention: as I approached the temple I had the certainty that I was about to enter an illuminated room and would meet there all those people to whom I belong in reality. There I would at last understand - this too was a certainty - what historical nexus I or my life fitted into. I would know what had been before me, why I had come into being, and where my life was flowing. My life as I lived it had often seemed to me like a story that has no beginning and end. I had the feeling that I was a historical fragment, an excerpt for which the preceding and succeeding text was missing. My life seemed to have been snipped out of a long chain of events, and many questions had remained unanswered. Why had it taken this course? Why had I brought these particular assumptions with me? What had I made of them? What will follow? I felt sure that I would receive an answer to all the questions as soon as I entered the rock temple. There I would meet the people who knew the answer to my question about what had been before and what would come after.

While I was thinking over these matters, something happened that caught my attention. From below, from the direction of Europe, an image floated up. It was my doctor, or rather, his likeness - framed by a golden chain or a golden laurel wreath. I knew at once: 'Aha, this is my doctor, of course, the one who has been treating me. But now he is coming in his primal form. In life he was an avatar of the temporal embodiment of the primal form, which has existed from the beginning. Now he is appearing in that primal form.'
Presumably I too was in my primal form, though this was something I did not observe but simply took for granted. As he stood before me, a mute exchange of thought took place between us. The doctor had been delegated by the earth to deliver a message to me, to tell me that there was a protest against my going away. I had no right to leave the earth and must return. The moment I heard that, the vision ceased.

Rather a long anecdote, that one. And who is Carl Jung? you may ask.

Len of the Chilterns

Len of the Chilterns Report 28 Jun 2008 21:21

In a hospital in Switzerland in 1944, the world-renowned psychiatrist Carl C Jung, had a heart attack and then a near-death experience. His vivid encounter with the light, plus the intensely meaningful insights led Jung to conclude that his experience came from something real and eternal. Jung's experience is unique in that he saw the earth from a vantage point of about a thousand miles above it. His incredibly accurate view of the earth from outer space was described about two decades before astronauts in space first described it. Subsequently, as he reflected on life after death, Jung recalled the meditating Hindu from his near-death experience and read it as a parable of the archetypal Higher Self, the God-image within. Carl Jung, who founded analytical psychology, centered on the archetypes of the collective unconscious. The following is an excerpt from his autobiography entitled Memories, Dream, Reflections (I own a copy) describing his near-death experience.

It seemed to me that I was high up in space. Far below I saw the globe of the earth, bathed in a gloriously blue light. I saw the deep blue sea and the continents. Far below my feet lay Ceylon, and in the distance ahead of me the subcontinent of India. My field of vision did not include the whole earth, but its global shape was plainly distinguishable and its outlines shone with a silvery gleam through that wonderful blue light. In many places the globe seemed colored, or spotted dark green like oxidized silver. Far away to the left lay a broad expanse - the reddish-yellow desert of Arabia; it was as though the silver of the earth had there assumed a reddish-gold hue. Then came the Red Sea, and far, far back - as if in the upper left of a map - I could just make out a bit of the Mediterranean. My gaze was directed chiefly toward that. Everything else appeared indistinct. I could also see the snow-covered Himalayas, but in that direction it was foggy or cloudy. I did not look to the right at all. I knew that I was on the point of departing from the earth.
Later I discovered how high in space one would have to be to have so extensive a view - approximately a thousand miles! The sight of the earth from this height was the most glorious thing I had ever seen.
After contemplating it for a while, I turned around. I had been standing with my back to the Indian Ocean, as it were, and my face to the north. Then it seemed to me that I made a turn to the south. Something new entered my field of vision. A short distance away I saw in space a tremendous dark block of stone, like a meteorite. It was about the size of my house, or even bigger. It was floating in space, and I myself was floating in space.
I had seen similar stones on the coast of the Gulf of Bengal. They were blocks of tawny granite, and some of them had been hollowed out into temples. My stone was one such gigantic dark block. An entrance led into a small antechamber. To the right of the entrance, a black Hindu sat silently in lotus posture upon a stone bench. He wore a white gown, and I knew that he expected me. Two steps led up to this antechamber, and inside, on the left, was the gate to the temple. Innumerable tiny niches, each with a saucer-like concavity filled with coconut oil and small burning wicks, surrounded the door with a wreath of bright flames. I had once actually seen this when I visited the Temple of the Holy Tooth at Kandy in Ceylon; the gate had been framed by several rows of burning oil lamps of this sort.

Len of the Chilterns

Len of the Chilterns Report 28 Jun 2008 21:11

More anecdotal material:

Author Dr S.Parnia
The answer about the significance of NDE is beginning to come from studies carried out with patients who have had a cardiac arrest.

Cardiac arrest patients are a subgroup of people who come closest to death. In such a situation an individual initially develops two out of three criteria (the absence of spontaneous breathing and heartbeat) of clinical death. Shortly afterwards (within seconds) these are followed by the third, which occurs due to the loss of activity of the areas of the brain responsible for sustaining life (brainstem) and thought processes (cerebral cortex). Brain monitoring using EEG in animals and humans has also demonstrated that the brain ceases to function at that time.

During a cardiac arrest, the blood pressure drops almost immediately to unrecordable levels and at the same time, due to a lack of blood flow, the brain stops functioning as seen by flat brain waves (isoelectric line) on the monitor within around 10 seconds. This then remains the case throughout the time when the heart is given 'electric shock' therapy or when drugs such as adrenaline are given until the heartbeat is finally restored and the patient is resuscitated. Due to the lack of brain function in these circumstances, therefore, one would not expect there to be any lucid, well-structured thought processes, with reasoning and memory formation, which are characteristic of NDEs.

Nevertheless, and contrary to what we would expect scientifically, studies have shown that 'near death experiences' do occur in such situations. This therefore raises a question of how such lucid and well-structured thought processes, together with such clear and vivid memories, occur in individuals who have little or no brain function. In other words, it would appear that the mind is seen to continue in a clinical setting in which there is little or no brain function. In particular, there have been reports of people being able to 'see' details from the events that occurred during their cardiac arrest, such as their dentures being removed.

A study by our group examining 63 cardiac arrest survivors on the coronary care and emergency units of Southampton General Hospital, which was published in the medical journal 'Resuscitation' demonstrated that approximately 6-10% of people with cardiac arrest have NDEs and out of body experiences. There was no evidence to support the role of drugs, oxygen or carbon dioxide (as measured from the blood) in causing the experiences. In another study just completed in Holland, 344 cardiac arrest survivors from 10 hospitals were interviewed over a 2-year period, and 41 or 12% reported a core NDE. Patients with NDEs were then followed up for a further 8 years following the event and reported less fear of death and a more spiritual outlook on life. This study by a cardiologist Dr Pim van Lommel, was published in the prestigious medical journal The Lancet.

The occurrence of NDEs in cardiac arrest further highlights the fact that we currently know very little about the relationship between the mind and the brain. It also raises the possibility that some of the current theories regarding mind/consciousness, spirituality and the brain may need to be re-examined.
Dr Parnia is a graduate of Guys and St. Thomas' medical schools in London. He is currently a registrar in internal and respiratory medicine as well as a clinical research fellow working towards a PhD in the molecular biology of asthma. He was a member of the Southampton University Trust Hospitals resuscitation committee between 1998 and 1999. He is also chairman of Horizon Research Foundation. While working on the medical and coronary care units of Southampton General Hospitals and together with Dr Peter Fenwick he set up the first ever study of near death experiences in the UK. The results of this study have received widespread coverage in the national and international press and have recently been published in the medical journal "Resuscitation”

No doubt some will say that Dr Parnia is not really qualified.


Joanna Report 28 Jun 2008 14:49

Yes, Pauline, I think I saw that programme, too.
There will probably never be any real proof that these children are reincarnated - but when their 'memories' can be confirmed like some have, it does make you wonder.
I suppose the main thing is that we should all still be open to 'wonder' - and be able to accept that inexplicable things happen to us or to people we know - even though these happenings may be classed as "anecdotal" to others, without physical proof.
There will always be forward-thinking people who will try to find the proof.


Eldrick Report 28 Jun 2008 00:29

Don't quite agree with what you say about anecdotal evidence being acceptable in law. It may be admissable but unless backed up, it carries as much weight as the jury may put on it - no more than that. For instance, if someone were to say to a jury ' I saw a ghost appear from the wall', and there is no other evidence to support it, such as a photograph or CCTV, the jury are entitled to believe or disbelieve as they think fit. So it may be admissable, as most evidence is. That is not quite the same as being acceptable. Science needs a little more than that.

Dr Ian Stevenson never produced conclusive proof but he was a respected academic. Some of his colleagues dismissed his research, others were ambivalent and some showed interest. However, Dr. Stevenson himself recognized one glaring flaw in his case for reincarnation: the absence of any evidence of a physical process by which a personality could survive death and transfer to another body.

It is extremely intersting, I admit, but a whole lot more work needs to be done before anyone can claim that these things are for real.

Len of the Chilterns

Len of the Chilterns Report 27 Jun 2008 23:30

Professor Ian Stevenson, the psychiatrist whose study of personality led to him becoming a world authority on reincarnation died on 8th February 2007. He was born in Montreal, Canada, in 1918 and studied medicine at St Andrews University in Scotland and McGill University, Montreal.

Probably the best known, if not most respected, collection of scientific data that appears to provide scientific proof that reincarnation is real, is the life's work of Dr. Ian Stevenson. Instead of relying on hypnosis to verify that an individual has had a previous life, he instead chose to collect thousands of cases of children who spontaneously (without hypnosis) remember a past life. Dr.Stevenson used this approach because spontaneous past-life memories in a child can be investigated using strict scientific protocols. Hypnosis, while useful in researching into past lives, is less reliable from a purely scientific perspective.

In order to collect his data, Dr. Stevenson methodically documented the child's statements of a previous life. Then he identified the deceased person the child remembers being, and verified the facts of the deceased person's life that match the child's memory. He even matched birthmarks and birth defects to wounds and scars on the deceased, verified by medical records. His strict methods systematically ruled out all possible "normal" explanations for the child’s memories.

Dr. Stevenson devoted the last forty years to the scientific documentation of past life memories of children from all over the world. There are over 3000 cases in his files. Many people, including sceptics and scholars, agree that these cases offer the best evidence yet for reincarnation. His credentials were impeccable. He was a medical doctor and was the author of more than 200 scholarly papers before he began paranormal research. He was the former head of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Virginia, and Director of the Division of Personality Studies at the University of Virginia.

Len of the Chilterns

Len of the Chilterns Report 27 Jun 2008 23:22

Anecdotal evidence can be overwhelming if from from various quarters and respected sources. It is acceptable in law, if not physics. Chris Lintott freely admitted on tv recently that science is very often found to be wrong even though having earlier proven their case.

I used to listen to and tape the BBC Reith Lectures. One of the lectures was given by one of the world's leading neuro-surgeons and, in conclusion, he said that if he had to ascribe properties to man there would be three: One physical, one chemical and the third he could only call spiritual. I still have the tapes but unfortunately, my old reel-to-reel tape recorder has died.

On another tack, I do have a VHS video recording of a Canadian documentary concerning the carrying out tests on a Spiritual Healer. Briefly, volunteers had almost identical damage inflicted to their forearms. A piece of skin and tissue of a given diameter and depth was surgically removed. They were divided into two groups and sat in cubicles with only the damaged area of skin visible. Their arms protruded through a screen and rested on a bench the other side. None knew into which category they had been placed. The control group was left to heal as best they could although unaware of being in any particular group. The second was medically treated with vaporized medicaments and antibiotics whilst the third group received the attention of the Healer. Treatment was (or not) administered over 16 days after which they were examined by dermatologists. The Healer had the highest success rate and the medical treatment came second followed by the control group..
Moreover, whilst doing his stuff the healer was monitored by an electroencephalograph and the technical report stated that an area of his brain was active during the sessions where, normally, no activity would have been expected.


Eldrick Report 26 Jun 2008 09:43

Regarding Eldrick's comment that for every anecdotal account there is a counter, could not the same be said for most things that are accepted as fact ?

I fully 100% agree, Len.

Which is why anecdotes alone are of such little value when considering the veracity of anything.

Len of the Chilterns

Len of the Chilterns Report 25 Jun 2008 23:20

Sparrow. Re your post of 23rd, perhaps a suitable, overall subject heading would be "metaphysics"?

Coincience: A remarkable concurrence of events or circumstances without apparent causal connection.

Possibly, by coincidence, you have recently experienced and marveled over a coincidence.
Arthur Köestler, the science-writer and philosopher, in his book “The Roots of Coincidence” observed that coincidences happen too frequently for them to be coincidences. .

Doctor and scientist, visionary and thinker Carl Jung’ one of the greatest intellects of the 20th century called coincidences “acts of creation”. He preferred the name synchronicity though.

Possibly no normal person has yet been born who has not experience this phenomenon. We respond so positively to accounts of coincidences because, as well as making good stories, they have overtones of the paranormal. There is a ritualistic quality to them because of their realistic narrative. A good coincidence story has the manner of a Greek drama about it, with overtones of the supernatural – except that it is not Greek drama but reality.

Coincidences can emerge at any moment. A friend of mine related to me a string of coincidences she experienced just as I was pondering the nature of coincidences and if they are governed by any laws of physics. They certainly fly in the face of statistics in that they occur many times more often than is permitted by chance alone. A major survey in the 1990s asked people to describe spiritual or religious-like experiences that they may have had. A large majority quoted extraordinary coincidences.

A researcher at the University of Manitoba, who spent several years studying coincidences experienced by university students, found that those who experienced “high” on the measure of synchronicity were alert to meaningful coincidences but also scored higher on a self-related measure of psychological health and generally adapted well to university life He concluded that people who are alert to coincidences in their lives, generally see the Universe as a friendly, ordered place and consequently develop an overall sense of well-being.

The one and only recorded time in my life when I walked in my sleep was when I was about 10. I had been asleep in bed when I got up, negotiated down two unlit flights of stairs and was woken up to find myself very disturbed, with my arms round my 18-year-old sister who was about to leave the house. I was saying good-bye to her. She was a nurse at a nearby hospital and she was going back to do her shift on duty. She was killed by a hit and run driver as she walked to the hospital. Coincidence?

Regarding Eldrick's comment that for every anecdotal account there is a counter, could not the same be said for most things that are accepted as fact ?

Len of the Chilterns

Len of the Chilterns Report 23 Jun 2008 23:04

Sparrow. In my travels I have met many people with unusual gifts (animals too).
I learned that many scientists (including Einstein) who have made major breakthroughs had an inkling of something and slaved away at their maths trying to prove their point but finally gave up. Then, when they shut down their conscious minds and went into a reverie, or meditaional state, inspiration suddenly came to them. Arthur Koestler did a study and came up with some 600 scientists who seemed to have solved major problems by "letting go". It has happened to me. I slogged away at a problem (at work) for about three weeks but finally threw in the towel and gave up. I went and sat on the loo and let my mind go blank ....then the truth hit me. My subconscious knew the answer and gave it to me but only when I shut off my conscious brain.

I believe that readers of tea-leaves, tarot cards, crystal-ball gazers and users of many other devices are using these things as a means of shutting down the conscious, thinking brain and becoming receptive at a sub-conscious level.


Onwe Report 23 Jun 2008 22:36

Yes reality in income earning hits us all. Glad your able to persue your passion.

I had my tarot cards read once, some of it was true but predictable considering the job i was in. What is your views on the cards.

Len of the Chilterns

Len of the Chilterns Report 23 Jun 2008 22:34

Sparrow. I suppose I would describe myself as a second-rate philosopher.

I did creditably well in the sciences but my dad ( some 67 years ago when things were viewed quite differently) thought I ought to enter a "respectable" profession and pressured me into entering the City of London College (now Uni,) and become an accountant or banker. I subsequently qualified as an accountant but never liked it much although the pay was reasonable. In fact I loathed it but, by then, had a small family to support.

When I could afford it I enrolled at the LSE and did a three year course Philosophy, Logic and Semantics - which had a severe effect on my mind as you can see from the stuff I write..


Onwe Report 23 Jun 2008 22:22

Sharon I would love to talk to some of my dead family tree members clear up a few tangle branches.

Len of the Chilterns

Len of the Chilterns Report 23 Jun 2008 22:17

I imagine Derren Brown makes much more money by claiming to be a hard-line disbeliever in the paranormal. He has won over an enormous audience eager savour his "tricks" and I imagine he would be viewed with disfavour by many of his followers should he admit to anything supernatural.
A very clever and astute man.


Sharron Report 23 Jun 2008 14:42

Imagine you are talking to one of your ancestors from the 18th century.Tell him how you light and heat your house,and how the power you use is produced.
That electricity and that nuclear power were always there,even in the 18c but would he believe you if you told him that?


Eldrick Report 23 Jun 2008 08:11

As with every anecdotal account, there is a counter.

I must have carried out close quarter surveillance on criminal subjects scores of times, many of them being extremely surveillance conscious and on occasions being almost within touching distance of the target. I have taken photographs and video film and comprehensive notes. At all times there were two of us, although both would not necessarily be looking at the target.

At no time - not one single occasion - did the subject give any indication at all that they were aware of being observed. And I'm not talking about CCTV surveillance here - although why should that be different - I am talking about direct line of sight, often with intense concentration.

With regards to the youtube clip of Derren Brown making a woman stop in her tracks, a total stranger walking along a street.....I can't explain it. I don't know anyone who can. But Derren Brown does not claim any paranormal abilities.......I wish he would, it would make it easier to understand!

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond Report 23 Jun 2008 03:26

Jo, you are a naughty girl, where would this poor chap have been living lol?

Sparrow, that took me a bit of working out, lol Must be getting near my bedtime!

Will try to read this thread another time, my head isn't clear today.


Onwe Report 23 Jun 2008 03:07

I have actually taken some time to read your stuff (threads). Are you a scientist of some description or very interested in this stuff. (I use the word stuff, nicely, because I am confused as to what subject heading it could go under).

Although there is a great deal to read through so only the more serious reader would take the time, I think everyone has experience many of the points in your thread.

For myself I am very sun motivated. Wet, cloudy and cold weather does not naturally motivate me I would prefer to hibenate. But at the age of 21 year and 300 months i have built up a get on with it attitude.

Its good reading.


Joanna Report 23 Jun 2008 02:39

Len, I am so pleased this is still on-going. It is so interesting.
I don't know anything about your obviously well-educated background as opposed to my very ordinary one, but there are so many things you talk about that I can relate to.
When I was P.A. to the then current Professor of Psychology at our Uni here, I used to have to write to Hanz Eysenck, sometimes even composing a letter on behalf of my boss!
But - this knowing when someone is watching you, I have proven for myself.
On our last tour in Malta, we had a house with a flat roof, and a rather large telescope that my Dad had bought for Mum some years before.
We set this up on our roof mainly to star gaze.
However, there were a lot of houses across the bay from us - with lots of open windows.
Being of a nosey disposition, I have to admit that I spent quite a lot of time long-distance people-watching.
There was one particular window with one particular man, and after probably about five minutes of watching this poor chap get more and more fidgety, he would then get up and close the wooden shutters across his window. He did look out to see if he could spot what was making him uncomfortable, but of course, I was miles away, usually in the dark.
i used to take my pals up onto our roof and bet them I could get this chap to pull his shutters across. I won again and again.
I hope I did not give this poor man a complex!



Eldrick Report 22 Jun 2008 22:34

Got to be something in it.