Reflections of inspiration

Growing up, most influences come from the family and the people we interact with, friends, teachers, neighbours and those we see on the television. The late great Carl Sagan was an indirect inspiration. That is I kept hearing his words growing up, without realising who he was. As I came through into adolescence every boy dreams of going into space, I would read books, scan the newspapers for space and technology news to the bemusement of many others at school. While also paying increasing attention to books of archaeology. National Geographic, Readers Digest, Osbourne books and the like.

One particular book called Mystic Places Mysteries of the unknown published by Readers Digest in 1988 which my mother brought stands out in my memory. stonehenge_strasserMust have read that book a thousand times. Vivid images of the mysteries of Stonehenge, Mary Celeste, the flying Dutchman, close encounters – indeed a picture was an artists impression of a silver-suited humanoid figure with large eyes looking through the car window at a terrified elderly couple haunted me for years, Mystic Places was my first encounter with what is known as the Ancient Alien theory. Including a detailed graphic of the sarcophagus lid from Palenque in central America, which took many years to excavate the earth which filled a single staircase going into the pyramid. The lid depicts what appears to be a figure, sat inside of a flying apparatus, his hands and feet manipulating instruments and complete with fiery exhaust.

palenque_05_jpg pl3terraa

At primary school where I attended Highlees Primary in Peterborough, in Year 4 (I was 8-9) my teacher was a wonderful middle-aged well spoken woman called Mrs Green and the adjacent classroom run by Mrs Jewitt would get together on a Friday afternoon. Bringing together the students and tell us a mystery and allow active discussion with the students. Stories such as the Bermuda celesteTriangle, Mary Celeste, the U.S.S. Aldridge, Life on other planets and what it would be like, the pyramids of the Giza plateau. I am ever grateful for this time, can be certain that in todays education allows not room for critical thinking and open discussion of topics considered fringe – despite their place in the psyche, embedded into history and their yearning to be talked about.

As a child, prior to the discovery of books, the first source of an unusual encounter was from my mother, she would tell me of a vivid spectral visit she would experience regularly when she was around 12. My mother is the eldest of 4 children of Madge and Stanley Lander. My grandfather Stanley was in the forces as a young man, a chauffeur and driver to top brass. With the family growing up, he resigned during the late 60s. They moved to Turves, a village of only 16 houses of the time either side of a B road leading out of Peterborough towards Cambridge. They had made a swap with one of my Granddads friends in the Army, whose father was seeking a move. As his wife had recently passed away and the house too big, but perfect for Madge, Stanley and the 4 children. An ideal swap. Without going into a lot of detail. My mother would tell me, that during the night her door would open and being a light sleeper she would wake up to ask who it was, thinking it was her mother. This happened frequently. She also began to notice jewellery would disappear from her jewellery box on the mirrored dresser. One particular night, she woke up to find an elderly lady sitting on the bed. Mum said the lady said, “Don’t worry, I’m just doing the cleaning, just having a rest”. Mum described her vividly, was very keen to state she was as real as anyone else, and had touched her. She wore her grey hair in a bun, a polar jumper, a pinafore apron and a pair of checked slippers with fluffy pompoms on them. Upon telling the family in the morning, she was laughed at and no one believed her. It was noticed a handprint was left on the mirror of the dresser. Jewellery box open, and a number of jewellery were missing a St Christopher necklace, a mother of pearl necklace and a charm bracelet.  No-ones hand matched up to the print and no-one would own up to the jewellery. r5024_y

Stanleys friends father Albert Palmer, whom the house was owned by previously would come over for Sunday dinner every week. The topic came up at the dinner table. When asked to describe the elderly lady, the friend was unanimous that it was a perfect description of his late wife. The following weekend, Albert came over again – bringing with him something quite unexpected. In Mrs Palmer Jewellery box, it was discovered to be the missing items from my mothers jewellery box. Whether the visits were the result of an over active imagination of a 12 year old girl, a dream which the brothers, her mum and dad had neatly labelled the encounters under. Jewellery somehow was transported from a house in Whittlesey to a residence in Grantham, which is around 30 miles away.

Suitably programmed to be looking into the curious from a young age. However the story of the spectral elderly lady was a huge impression, it’s not necessarily in the way you may imagine. My first question once I had heard the story when around 6, was regarding the jewellery. “How did the jewellery leave the “house?” My mind as immature as it was at the time devoid of the greater wide view of the world, was looking at the solid object and considering how it passes through the walls of a house. In my mind, I was seeing the image of the jewellery passing through the walls and across the landscape. Was it teleported? The handprint on the mirror, how and why did a ghost leave something well… physical.

It is the questions of the hows and whys does it happen, that are the most interesting. Which these are questions that run through my mind, when someone tells of an occurrence. Take for an example of the 8 common phenomena of a phantom hitchhiker. Why would an apparition appear at the side of a road? Then there’s the physical impression they have, they physically interact with the door, the car light when the door is open is “on” the person this means the photons were being reflected off something physical,  how did they have mass as they sat down in the car, have a “solid” appearance, then a short way down the road they disappear from the seat.

Often I’m asked “How do i become a investigator?”, “What do I have to do to become a researcher?” of which the answer is, build your knowledge base. How can one give structured sound advice, if one does not know the information surrounding the questions being asked.

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In the last couple of years, we’ve somewhat stepped away from active investigations. But have become more an observer and trying to gain insight into the actions of alleged investigators. For instance, why are they using “x” piece of equipment? What data do they hope to gather? Of the data gathered during an investigation whether, video, audio, photographic, device data and recorded information how is this analysed? Is it available for review by external professionals? What are the groups intentions for the recorded data. Why is where we are today with Projects like Project WIRGOOT aiming to survey how groups conduct investigations, and what is done with the information gathered.

Giving presentations and talks around the county. Focusing as well on other aspects of the unexplained, rather than just ghosts, because there is more to the paranormal than just ghostbusting.

Kristian Lander.

giorgio styl;eHere sporting my Gold flyer pin badge and Giorgio Tsoukalos’ style hair.

Engima talk

Evening went very well, the goal of generating a lot of discussion across a wide spectrum was certainly realized.
Videos of Carnac, Mohenjo Daro and Darinkuju.

Psychical experiments of remote viewing and telepathic projection had interesting results.

Conducted a double blind telepathic experiment where 2 participants faced a non descript wall clear in mind to receive symbols from a zener card set, while the other attendees in the room focused on sending the symbol to only one of them. Of which the recievers didnt know, who was the “directed at” reciever.
Went through 3 randomly chosen cards.

Second experiment was remote viewing, where a sealed box with a object within was placed in an adjacent room. A guided mental exercise to go to the box and to “go inside” discover what the object is. Then come back to thr body and then describe what they saw. Yielded some interesting results!
With an agreement to get together to try some more at later date.

Anomaly: Journal of research into the Paranormal volume 45 Nov 2011 now available

Volume 45 is now available, clocking in at a good size of 251 pages of accessible Journal papers published by the Association for the Scientific Study of Anomalous Phenomena and is available for purchase of £10 ($20). There is a quote which I comes to mind “Extraordinary results through the wise application of knowledge” (Which comes from Ron Young). ASSAPs Anomaly does just that, provides knowledge from which to build structure and look to discover the extraordinary.

A list of the articles and conference papers contained within, should wet your appetite enough to encourage you to obtain a copy of this excellent publication.

The effects of religious priming on pseudohallucinations induced by mirror gazing – Alex Rugens
Ethical issues in spontaneous phenomena investigations – Dave wood and Christian Jenson Romer
Rendelsham Forest incident: Overview – Robert Moore

Hilary Evans: An Obituary – Hugh Pincott
Why everything we think know about ghost is (probably) wrong – Christian Jenson Romer
Problems in establishing the authenticity of crop circles – Trystan Swale
Anthropology of spirit mediumship, animism and altered states of consciousness – Jack Hunter
The future of paranormal investigation: onwards and upwards for the next 30 years – John Fraser
Further comments on alleged phone calls from the dead – Cal Cooper
Bigfoot/sasquatch evidence – Paul Vella
Infrasound and its association with paranormal experiences – Steve Parsons
Power to the people: the role of consciousness in paranormal research – Hugh Pincott
Seeing relationships that dont exist: Paul Rogers
Head and tales: Strange case of the Hexham heads – David Taylor
Effect of paranormal belief on response bias in an EVP task – Simon Sherwood
RAND, UFOs, Superstition and the psychological warfare – Mark Pilkington

Not to mention more! including brilliant book reviews and correspondence. Anomaly 45 should be in the hands of any person considering themselves to be a paranormal investigator, follower of the unexplained or a curious observer looking to learn. For me personally, who attended ASSAP30 Seriously Strange conference event and got to listen to many of the talks by those active in the field of research and academia. My scribbling hand wasn’t fast enough on the day for taking notes of such involving presentations and information. ASSAP have played an ace from their sleeve by publishing them here for just £10 this deserves to be in the collection and would make an ideal gift for someone involved in any of the aspects of the unexplained.

Journal submission research article/project: “Just what are investigators really doing?”

One of the data research projects we have under way at the moment is discovering how and what paranormal investigative and ghost hunting teams do. We have been in contact with a number of teams who we hope will participate in our data gathering survey. You could say in many ways this is a press release of our intention and why

We will endeavor by way of questionnaire and survey, look to learn the conduct, methodology and working principals of active investigators and groups in the field of paranormal investigation. Going on a ghost hunt at a location with “x” event organizers, that is apparently haunted. Is this really investigating the unexplained?
Do groups use the process of elimination, if so, do groups have structured guide for this? Do groups participate in active research of anomalous phenomena? Do groups keep up to date on developments and news? Is the aim to become a business selling events and tours as many have done? Do “paranormal” groups actually look into other areas of the unexplained besides ghosts? What equipment do groups actually have apparent success with? Have they published their findings? Do groups communicate with separate investigation teams to compare documentation and gathered data?

With the most important question is – What are we actually doing to document and prove the paranormal?

These are just a few examples of the questions that get raised the most often. We are going to discover of the investigation organizations and groups that participate and respond – just what investigators are really doing?

Paranormal Network.

Paranormal Network publish “Men in black” audio feature.

We trust everyone out there in the real world has had a wonderful yule tide and christmas. We present a special available to listen now – entitled “Men in black”. Paranormal Network publishes a new audio feature, looking at the Men in Black phenomenon. Mysterious and sinister individuals who put fear into those who witness UFOs, with threats and harassment. We look at first hand reports, encounters and more. Listen exclusively here http://www.ParanormalNetwork.co.uk the home of articles, features, investigations, research and networking.

http://www.ParanormalNetwork.co.uk

Exorcising The Demons by Sam Brown (of UKPN) – Review

Exorcising the demons is a introduction and glimpse into the sector of paranormal research that has become the “in thing” of the unexplained at the moment – demons, demonology and demonologists. What this book is not is a guide to exorcising demons, but to exercise logic, apply common sense and look at alternative explanations.  A smart play on words with the title.

Exorcising the demons coverThe book is written in an accessible style, so that those from all levels of interest and experience can benefit. Continue reading