Last night some of the local PSICAN members met with authors and fellow UFO researchers Chris Rutkowski and David Haisell at the Artful Dodger here in Toronto. Despite being seated beside some very loud birthday revellers we did manage to get in some great UFO and parapsychology shop talk so to speak. Thanks so much to Chris and David and cheers again to UFOs!
I first wrote about David Haisell's The Missing Seven Hours for this blog back in 2006. It was an entry entitled I Love Used Book Stores and I was so excited to have found a copy of his book. The original had been out of print for quite some time, and not only had I found it, I think at the time I paid about a dollar. I still treasure it.
From my original blog post: "The book details the investigation of a series of alleged alien abductions/contact that occurred within an hour of my home in the Lake Simcoe area of southern Ontario. It all began for Gerry Armstrong as a young lad growing up in the UK during the 1950's and a puzzling episode where he seemingly lost seven hours of time. The book chronicles the Armstrong family's experiences with UFO's, apparitions, poltergeist activity, and an encounter with their exact body doubles that spans twenty-five years and two continents. "
This is a case that has fascinated me ever since, and even more so after I learned more about the late Henry McKay's investigations into the Jackson's Point UFOs. So, you can imagine how happy I was to learn the book has been recently updated! Read more here: Intro To Missing Seven Hours A Question Of Control Please note this is a link to a pdf.
In the original David Haisell writes about the strong influence Jacques Vallee's Invisible College had on his thoughts and ideas while investigating these very strange happenings. And as someone who equally admires the work of Vallee I am eager to read David's updates, insights, and conclusions. Mr Haisell if you find this blog entry please contact me. Would love to talk to you.
Click here for purchasing information for A Question Of Control A UFO Revelation!
Members of the Eccentric Club of London at their annual Friday the 13th lunch in 1936 – surrounded by objects that are connected with superstitions.
Friday the 13th has never bothered me, in fact my own parents were married on a Friday the thirteenth. They liked to break with tradition as a rule. More recently on the last Friday the 13th this past December 2013 I was given perhaps the happiest news of my life after going through a very serious medical situation last winter. On a personal level Friday the 13th has become a very lucky day.
Whilst the day and/or number has never troubled me personally, it does cause some real issues for certain people suffering paraskevidekatriaphobia (say that three times fast) or a morbid, and irrational fear of Friday the 13th, as coined by Dr. Donald Dossey.
According to a 2000 survey conducted by American Demographics 13% of Americans suffer this fear. Its an interesting coincidence with that number 13, and I sincerely hope that you dear readers are not afflicted with this.
The history of where this fear originated is unclear, but here are a few theories put forward by others:
Christ is thought to have been crucified on a Friday, which was execution day among the Romans.
Friday's were also traditionally execution day in Britain.
The number 13 ties in as it was believed to bring bad luck because there were 13 people at The Last Supper. People have suggested that Friday was the day God threw Adam and Eve out of the garden of Eden, which would be a lucky guess as the concept of Friday hadn't been invented yet.
Thirteen is an unlucky or bad number in Norse mythology as well. Loki, the most mischievous of the Norse gods, went uninvited to a party for 12 at Valhalla, a banquet hall of the gods. And whilst there he caused the death of Balder, the god of light, joy, and reconciliation.
On Friday, October 13, 1307, King Philip IV of France ordered the arrests of Jaques de Molay, Grand Master of the Knights Templars and sixty of his senior knights in Paris. Thousands of others were arrested elsewhere in the country. After utilising torture techniques to force the Templars to "confess" to wrongdoing, most were eventually executed and sympathizers of the Templars condemned Friday the 13th as an evil day.
Chaucer alluded to Friday as a day on which bad things seemed to happen in the Canterbury Tales during the late 14th century, "And on a Friday fell all this mischance." Perhaps with the plight of the Templars in mind?
In my opinion it was probably a combination of all of the above that led to the superstition, and belief that Fridays that fall on the 13th are somehow an unlucky day. How do you feel about Friday the 13th? Will you be doing anything different today because of it? Or do you believe it to be a silly superstition only?
Wishing you a great day no matter how you feel about it!
Image credit: Getty Images
Earlier this morning I was having a lively discussion within our Canadian paranormal Facebook group on the topic of ghosts, our pets, and the possibility of an animal afterlife. This is a topic that is dear to many of our hearts. Anyone who has loved an animal and believes in an afterlife would want the reassurance that their animal companion also survives in some sense after their bodily death.
Christopher Laursen has written an excellent article on this topic entitled "Why Not An Animal Afterlife?" in which he shares a personal experience. I too have written on Animal Apparitions that includes my experiences with a ghostly cat. My own encounter was not with a beloved pet, but perhaps a former resident of my 1920s home.
Over the years we have collected numerous accountings from people who have had an experience with what they believe is the spirit of an animal that has passed on. Just recently I published an encounter to the PSICAN website that is typical of the type of reports we receive. I entitled the article "A Family Dog Says Good-bye" because that is exactly how the witness described their experience .
While reports of ghostly cats and dogs are quite common I would be interested in hearing about similar encounters with other types of animals that we might form a close bond with such as horses, birds, or smaller mammals.
I have wondered about the possibility of non-domestic animal apparitions. I do not believe I have ever received a report of a ghostly coyote, moose or other wild creature, but if pets can haunt, why not wildlife?
It is my opinion that if human consciousness can survive bodily death then it stands to reason the consciousness of all living things must survive too.
It has been a long time since I've written anything for this blog. Its not that I'm suffering a paranormal burn-out so to speak, but more to do with life getting in the way of hobby. I hope to change that in the coming weeks, and contribute more to both this blog and Toronto Ghosts. Part of what has gotten me fired up for all things ghostly again is Doors Open Toronto. This is always a great event, and one we are happy to support through attending every year, but this year's theme makes it just that much more special for us.
This year's theme for Doors Open Toronto is Secrets and Spirits… Exploring the Mysteries Behind the Door. Close to 80 locations will feature secret spaces, stories of spirit sightings and unexplained mysteries. Honestly, how cool is that!
Oddly enough while doing some backdoor work on this blog the other night I came across this blog entry entitled Doors Open - Minds Closed which was posted almost exactly 8 years ago to the day. Matthew was writing about our support of this great city-wide event, but how we wished the city would embrace some of its darker history and of course our ghosts. In the original article Matthew describes how a good ghost story can actually be a great way to help teach history.
"If you take a group of school kids and sit them in a room of a historic place and start telling them the tales of "daring-do" that happened in that room, you'll gain a few more listeners... but many will be comparing the stories they're hearing to Batman Returns... and probably you should have the puppies and pillows on hand again.
Tell them that the room or even the building is reportedly haunted... and they'll hang off every word. It doesn't even have to be a "scary" story and you can even let them know (and yes, statistically speaking, unless you're in the early 1800's in a farm in Tennessee, it's going to be the truth,) that the ghost(s) are harmless.
People need to remember that the BEST "true ghost stories" END with the words, "...and to this day, his/her ghost is seen..."
In other words, the story is told, THEN the "ghost" is introduced.
In doing this, the story is put across, retention is better, and people enjoy themselves more.
Now, I'm REALLY a historian first in many ways... and I love the darker side of history and, of course, it's ghosts... and I've seen first hand the attention that the history of a site is taken in when wrapped in a ghost story."
This is of course as true today as it was when it was written in 2006, and we are delighted to see that Toronto is indeed finally embracing its ghosts, and hauntings, and mysteries on such a large scale. This is a free event and we highly recommend taking the ghost tours if you can. Space is limited, and you need to pre-register for those through the Doors Open webpage.
Please do let us know if you go, and of course if you believe you've had a ghostly encounter in the City of Toronto we want to hear about it. We have a few buildings in mind that we have on our must visit list including the Alumnae Theatre at 70 Berkeley St. Not only will staff be on hand to discuss the ghostly history of this amazing building they will also be putting on a short 10 minute play based on one of the resident ghosts!
The entries found on this blog are based on the thoughts and discussion of Sue Demeter-St Clair and Matthew James Didier....two paranormal investigators/researchers based out of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
We are founding members of The Ghosts and Hauntings Research Societies, Paranormal Studies & Investigations Canada - PSICAN, and Pararesearchers of Ontario and are members and supporters of The Society of Psychical Research, and the Institute of Noetic Sciences
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