The Paranormal And Me

The Paranormal And Me

paranormal
Photographer: Steinar Engeland | Source: Unsplash

It all started when I was about six years old.

I certainly don't remember thinking about death and what happens next in life, but my earliest memory of being a little strange came when I was sat on the stairs at our house in Southbourne, Bournemouth.

I asked my mother who was pottering around in the kitchen

''can't you even pick up a biscuit when you die?''

This made me realize, much later in life, that I questioned the afterlife and wanted answers to all these strange thoughts; mum and dad never really willing to discuss such subjects.

There was some some respite of these thoughts until the family, large and growing bigger moved to Spain as my dad had gone into a joint business there. Whilst we were there my sister and I found our way to a small park that was simply blank, we thought it was like a ghost town. I was eight at this point, my sister a year younger. My sister saw a man lying flat on a bench with his entire body covered in moisture; we think it was probably sweat as it was just another day of intense heat.I didn't feel comfortable so after a couple of rides on the swing we carried on walking into further adventures. After wondering around further we decided to return to our local park that played the chart music daily, yet on the way there a feeling of dread sped through my entire being causing me to almost lose my balance. I can't remember much else of the physical sensations but I just didn't feel the way I normally do.

Here is the childhood photo series. All the places that stunned me when I was a kid.
Photographer: Mehdi-Thomas BOUTDARINE | Source: Unsplash

While we were enjoying ourselves in the park singing to the music we noticed two black men just staring at us. There were no other children there but many adults and families were on the outside of the park drinking and eating, having a joyous time. When an English lady in her fifties came up to us and told us that the men were dangerous and we shouldn't approach them.

When we returned home to our flat our older brother who had been out walking came back in a distressed state. He had become withdrawn after an hour or two.

My day out was becoming strange to me, my thoughts and feelings were twisted, changed, and I was feeling sad but with no real logic attached to these emotions. It was years later when my brother told my mother that he had been assaulted, an event that changed his life and mine.

Paranormal and The Watchers

We stayed in Spain for a year but we came back to England as the business fell through. We had no choice but to move to an area just outside Bournemouth. Further events surfaced in our new house, a mixture of the paranormal and ill health afflicting not just my brother but myself also.

The unknown had visited me again when I was about thirteen. I was asleep at some point but vividly recall the feel of violent hands tightening across my throat, and I can go back to the point of remembering myself coughing and waking trying to reach my neck with my own hands.

Nightmares

Was I having a nightmare? I don't know, even now, but when I think back to further paranormal occurrences in the house it's possible to believe it to be an evil spirit. My very sensible sister who would of been ten at the time told me a man in a hood, not fully visible was wavering at the end of her bed making her wake suddenly in the night. Another brother of mine mentioned the same figure some years later. I had not seen this figure as we all got older and moved out nothing more was said.

evil figures

I moved here in Wimborne, Dorset, England in 1997 with my twin daughters. I picked out many books in our local library about the history of Dorset, and books about the supernatural. I came across a book about haunted Dorset. To my surprise there was a paragraph featuring an article on a care home which was a ''stone throw'' away from my bedroom window, our back garden led to this home. I found out that the grounds to which the care home was built was once a monastery; we had attended a fete there a few years after the events in our home. You can see the uneven ground as you enter the garden even now. The name of the care home has changed now, yet at the time none of us realized there was a monastery right behind our garden fence.

It just could be possible that the monks seen by my siblings were actually really there, and the evil that approached me that night may of also come from the remaining energies that may still reside there.

This story is a genuine account of just a handful of some of the paranormal incidents that I have encountered throughout my life, with more to share. I have decided that the paranormal follows me, and I am drawn to its energy.

Paranormal Artist Susan Hiller Dies Aged 78

Paranormal Artist Susan Hiller Dies Aged 78

Susan Hiller After Duchamp, 2016 – 2017, 50 color archival dry prints, 30.5 x 30.5 cm (each), 12 x 12 in (each) After Duchamp: © Susan Hiller; Courtesy Lisson Gallery. Photography Jack Hems.

Renowned paranormal artist Susan Hiller, who based her work on subjects such as alien abductions, near death experiences and fairy rings, has died aged 78 after a brief illness. Matt's Gallery in London confirmed the news and described her as “a unique and idiosyncratic voice, a great artist, writer, thinker and mentor to many”. Let us take a look at Susan's life and celebrate her.

Her Early Life

Susan Hiller was born in 1940 in Tallahassee, Florida. She graduated from the Coral Gables High School in Florida and would obtain her B.A. from Smith College in Northampton in 1961. She would go on to study photography, film, drawing and linguistics in New York shortly before she obtained her post-graduate degree at the Tulane University in New Orleans.

Despite obtaining a degree in anthropology, Hiller would become a critic of academic anthropology. Later, during a slide lecture on African art, she decided she would pursue a career as an artist.

Her Influences

Susan Hiller had several influences playing on her work. Minimalism and conceptual art were some of her earliest influences. She would also state that fluxus, surrealism, and anthropology as major influence on her art.

Susan Hiller – Psi Girls, 1999
Video installation: 5 synchronized programs, 5 projections, color with stereo sound, real-time audio processing, Program duration 20 minutes, Psi Girls: © Susan Hiller; Courtesy Lisson Gallery.

Even though Susan started to practice art in 1970, she would not have her first art exhibition until 1973. She displayed her art as a part of a group show in London's Gallery House. Her exhibition would give her the nickname 'Hace Possible', which stands for 'make it possible' when translated from Spanish.

During her career, Hiller would draw inspiration from the everyday, but also from valued cultural artifacts and paranormal phenomena. From UFO sightings and fairy rings to horror movies and postcards, they all served as inspiration for Susan's inspirational work.

Hiller did not only have a career as an artist, she also found a calling as a lecturer. During her life, she lectured at the Slade School of Fine Art and California State University.

Displayed Work

Much of Susan's work is available for the public to view, although some of her work belongs to the private collection of art collectors. Some of the locations where her work can be viewed include, the Lisson Gallery In London whom we are grateful to receive rights to reproduce her work here, and Centre Pompidou in Paris, The Tate Gallery in London, and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

Feew artists have had such and impact on the paranormal scene, bringing it into the art and culture era. Her life and works will continue to adorn the walls of collectors and many will continue to question – what is possible. If you are in London and you are a serious researcher and collector, visit the Lisson Gallery to see her works and other wonderful artists.

Image Reference:

https://www.lissongallery.com/artists/susan-hiller/gallery/10478

© Susan Hiller; Courtesy Lisson Gallery. Photography Jack Hems.

https://www.lissongallery.com/artists/susan-hiller/gallery/13735

Psi Girls: © Susan Hiller; Courtesy Lisson Gallery.

The Weirdest Facts About Crystal Balls

The Weirdest Facts About Crystal Balls

There are certain objects in the world that have always been associated with the mystical and the crystal ball is one of them. Crossing the barriers of religion and legend, the crystal ball has been a mysterious addition to our world indeed.

It is not strange to believe that there are a lot of weird facts surrounding the crystal ball. If you are curious about such facts, be sure to read our weirdest facts on crystal balls below.

The Crystal Ball Is Related To Scrying

crystal balls
Weird Facts About Crystal Balls

While modern Wiccan techniques see scrying as using a pendant to look for missing objects or people, the root of scrying actually lies with the crystal ball. Those more proficient in Wiccan knowledge already know that scrying actually stems from the crystal ball, where it was believed that starting into it could help one predict the future.

Interestingly enough, the term scrying can be traced to the Ancient Druids, historically known as the Celtics from the Bronze age. They were mainly found in Britain and France, so it is also believed the act of scrying stems from that era.

Some historians believe that the Ancient Druids used the crystal ball to peer in to the future, subsequently accurately predicting it. Of course, this action was quite different than anyone who would do this today, as druids were known to use other reflective surfaces too; this included water.

Practiced Around The World With Crystal Balls

crystal balls

Even though the crystal ball and its alleged ability to predict the future originated from the United Kingdom and France, the crystal ball found its way around the world over time; this once again proves the intrigue of an object such as this.

One of the countries where the crystal ball became a source of fascination was 1888 China. During this time, the yuang-kuang-fuchou – a criminal code – dictated that someone could use the crystal ball to gaze upon the face of a thief. Naturally, this caused some Chinese criminal elements to refrain from robbing those with the ability of foresight.

The crystal ball has also put a mark on Indian history. In fact, in the late 1800s, Khalif Mansur is believed to have used a reflective surface to reveal the nature of the person in front of him. With it, he claimed to know whether they were friend or foe.

Fear Of The Crystal Ball And The Occult

Despite its integration in cultures around the world, the use of a crystal ball or reflective surface for occult purposes was forbidden in many of those cultures. Even religions would frown upon its use, one of the most prominent ones being the old testament, which contained the following.

for these nations, which you are about to dispossess, listen to fortune tellers and to diviners. But as for you, the Lord your God has not allowed you to do this." (Deuteronomy 18:14)

While the practice of scrying was largely forbidden and frowned upon in many cultures and religion, its appeal caused its use to continue. In fact, historians believe that these objects were used to protect against evil during the Middle Ages.

Becoming Famous

Considering the fact that the crystal ball has been around for a long time, it is no surprise that there are some famous crystal balls, which have now found their way to a museum. Below, we have listed some of the best-known crystal balls and their locations.

The largest crystal ball currently known is stored in the famous Smithsonian museum. According to official information, the crystal ball stems from 1800s China and is believed to have been mined in Birma. With measurements of 12.9 inches and a weight of more than 106 pounds, it is the largest crystal ball in existence.

Another famous crystal ball can be found in Dallas and is called the Dallas Globe. The crystal ball is believed to date back to 19th century Japan. The impressive crystal ball measures 11.3 inches and is a close second to the larger crystal ball at the Smithsonian.

Surprisingly enough, the third largest crystal ball in the world also stems from Asia. It is currently housed at the Penn Museum and is believed to have been owned by the Dowager Empress of China. While it only measures 10 inches and weighs 49 pounds, the crystal ball certainly has an interesting history. In fact, the famous crystal ball was stolen in 1988, alongside an ancient Egyptian statue. Fortunately, the ball was recovered in 1991.

Of course, famous crystal balls do not always have to be ancient. In fact, one of the best-known crystal balls comes from the movie "The Wizard Of Oz". The ball was such a desired object, it was sold for a whopping $129,000 during an auction in the early 2000s.

So, there you have it! The crystal ball has travelled through time and is still an object of intrigue till this day. Whether you love the look of one in your home, or you have a more spiritual interest, nobody can deny this mythical object has stood the test of time.

References:
https://www.penn.museum/collections/highlights/asian/crystalball.php
https://crowcollection.org/curator-conversations/crystal-gazing/
https://www.penn.museum/blog/museum/chinese-crystal-balls-mysterious-past/
https://medium.com/@UpsideTravel/restoration-revealed-the-original-wizard-of-oz-crystal-ball-ecad4b7e763f