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Professor of Religious Studies Survives Career in Exile

Posted on 31 August 2020, 8:07

After Stafford Betty read my recent Amazon review of Bob Gebelein’s book, Dirty Science, he commented that “the book explains as well as any what happened to me in the suffocating academic environment I lived in. I’m lucky to have survived until retirement, which will be official by the end of this month.”

Betty, a professor of religious studies at California State University at Bakersfield since 1972, dared to go beyond the limits of both orthodox religion and materialistic science in his lectures, discussing with his students credible research in such areas as near-death experiences, reincarnation, mediumship, and deathbed phenomena.  “My departmental colleagues are embarrassed by my interest in the paranormal,” Betty (below) explained when I interviewed him in 2014 “I have tried to share it with selected members, but none has ever shown any interest.  James Joyce once described one of his fictional characters as ‘a giraffe cropping high leafage among a herd of antelopes.’ That’s me.  No doubt several of my colleagues would be happy to see me retire.” 

 betty

Gebelein’s book discusses the resistance to paranormal phenomena and the research carried out by many esteemed scientists and scholars over the last century and a half – research strongly suggesting that consciousness survives death in a greater reality. This resistance results from the materialistic mindset which holds that there is no reality beyond the physical, all of which can be detected by our five senses.  It has been called “physicalism,’ “scientism,” ‘reductionism,” or “materialism.”  “…as long as physicalism dominates the academic community, it dominates the whole culture,” Gebelein offers. “The academic community defines that culture. The academic community decides what is ‘established’.” The academic community decides what the culture recognizes as ‘knowledge’… If the academic community is dominated by dirty science, so is culture.”  As he sees it, physicalism dominates the academic community as if it were a hypnotic command. 

Dirty science, Gebelein continues, is that resulting from bias toward psychic phenomena by mainstream scientists – a bias that results in misinterpretations, distortion, twisting, misrepresentations, and ridicule of everything outside the scope of the five senses, including scientific studies by open-minded scientists and academicians who have been brave enough to defy their colleagues and venture outside the limited boundaries of the mainstream.

In my earlier interviews and talks with Professor Betty, we talked about this very bias that has polluted academia.  I again discussed it with him last week.  He explained that impatience over his interests in psychic matters had been mounting over the years, but it was not until 15 years ago, when, as a senior member in his philosophy and religious studies department, he was in charge of hiring two new faculty, that it crested.  “There was fear that I would hire somebody with interests similar to mine,” he further explained by email. “A cabal of Betty haters rose up and began arguing, never to my face but behind my back (as I later learned) that the way I related to women in my department made them ‘uncomfortable’.”

The principle of academic freedom protected Betty from a frontal attack. “The only way to silence and eventually remove me from the department was to assail me (I later learned to my astonishment) as someone who was racist, sexist, anti-Semitic, religiously bigoted, and ageist.”

For the remainder of his career, Betty was banned from the department but continued to teach, not to philosophy or religious studies majors but rather to those majoring in other subjects, including many business majors.  He reported directly to the dean, not the department chair, and wasn’t even allowed to enter the building where his department was housed until the dean discovered such exclusion was illegal.  “The philosophers became increasingly concerned that I was lending respectability to a dualist metaphysics that contradicted the materialist worldview they all hewed to, and wanted their students to hew to,” he lamented. “Their leader swore to remove me from the department any way he could.  The department even removed my courses in Asian philosophy, philosophy of religion, and philosophy and religion in literature from the catalog.”

In spite of his banishment, Betty’s course, The Meaning of Death, became one of the most popular courses in the university. “Its popularity soared after I converted it over from a course more concerned with the sociology of death to one that deals more with metaphysics, especially with life after death,” he told me in the 2014 interview. “It is the latter that many of our students want reassurance about. They are like me thirty years ago.”  When Betty began using his book, The Afterlife Unveiled, in that course, his colleagues found that especially embarrassing. 

“For years, I asked deans and academic vice-presidents – they came and they went – to set up an impartial panel of faculty to investigate the allegations against me, clear my name, and restore my position in the department,” Betty continued. “No one would do it.  Everyone knew the charges would not stand.  To this day I have not been given the chance to face my accusers. I don’t know what they would say or how they would defend their lies. In the end, they got off scot-free.  And the real reason for this persecution?  I believed in a spiritual world and that we are spiritual beings, and I ‘poisoned’ the minds of my students with my ‘pseudoscience.’ They tolerated my teaching of my signature course, The Meaning of Death, as long as none of our majors took it.

“In the final analysis, my colleagues thought I had failed to outgrow the Catholic religion I grew up with.  It never occurred to them that I had outgrown it, too, but had from that point on gone down a different road.  To put it simply, I had felt an emptiness when I lost my faith, and they apparently had not.” 

In my earlier interview with Betty, he explained that his faith in Catholicism began to deteriorate after he returned from a stint in Vietnam as an Army engineer officer, primarily the result of reading Bertrand Russell’s Why I Am Not a Christian and not being able to counter his arguments.  While pursuing his studies at Fordham, Columbia, and Union Theological, he concentrated on Asian religious thought, especially Hinduism.  It was not until he had been teaching at Cal State for three years that he read Raymond Moody’s Life after Life, about near-death experiences, and that pieces started to come together for him. Not only did it reassure him that survival is highly probable, but it also led him to explore other paranormal phenomena.     

In retrospect, Betty sees his exile as the best thing that ever happened to him, professionally.  Shut out from departmental activities, he used the extra time to study in depth the books that really interested him – spirit accounts of their world, the one we all enter at death.  In 2011 he authored The Afterlife Unveiled, which is nearing 20,000 in sales.  That was followed by Heaven and Hell Unveiled (2014) and When did You Ever Become Less by Dying? (2016) A novel set in the afterlife, The Imprisoned Splendor, was also published in 2011. 

His new novel, The Afterlife Therapist, published by White Crow Books, is due in September 2020. As described at the White Crow web site, the protagonist, Aiden Lovejoy, a family therapist in earth life, picks up in the afterlife where he left off.  He encounters hellish zones where disfigured characters choose to live, and their suffering calls out to him. But he has troubles of his own, and souls from higher worlds inspire him to reach higher. Betty refers to it as a “more mature fictional adventure” than his earlier novel.  The novel is based on his research. 

“I have no evidence that any tenured professor in my (former) department other than my lone courageous supporter ever read a page of these books, either fiction or non-fiction,” he wrote.  “Instead of seeing me as a pioneer bringing distinction to the university, they regard me as an odd duck whose interests suggest, as one of them put it, an unfulfilled life at a physical level, which is entirely untrue.”

I asked Betty if he sees any hope that academia will move away from the materialist worldview it is now stuck in.  “Plenty of hope, but nothing like compelling evidence,” he responded. “My books produced a lot of correspondence, but not from philosophy professors.  I tell myself it’s okay.  There are many inquisitive minds out there that have not been shuttered by the requirements of a philosophy curriculum.” 

Any plans for his retirement?  “I’ll have time to set up a web page and bring together my writings into one place – also more time to market my books.  I’m just finishing a semiautobiographical novel about life at a state university – aha! – but what then? I don’t know.  For me, that’s a strange feeling.  One thing is certain, I’ll be spending more time with my three children and four grandchildren and helping my busy wife, an English professor, with the cooking!”


Michael Tymn is the author of The Afterlife Revealed: What Happens After We Die, Resurrecting Leonora Piper: How Science Discovered the Afterlife, and Dead Men Talking: Afterlife Communication from World War I.
His forthcoming book, No One Really Dies: 25 Reasons to Believe in an Afterlife is due in January 2021.

Next blog post:  September 14


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Hitting the Wall, then Oblivion?

Posted on 17 August 2020, 7:50

With Hurricane Douglas on a direct path toward Hawaii, where I live,  during the last week of July, I had doubts about making it to my next age milestone of 1000 months on August 2.  Hurricanes are fairly new to us, apparently the result of global warming, and the homes here are not constructed to resist such strong winds.  We have few shelters – just enough for the homeless – and we can’t jump in our cars and flee from it as people on the mainland do.  Thus, as Douglas moved closer and closer, I had visions of flying off with our house while grasping the leg of the heavy oak table in the dining room and embracing my wife.

A much greater fear was that I would survive the hurricane with no house and all worldly goods strewn over the nearby mountain range.  I could envision living my final days in this realm of existence in a grass shack much like the one in the accompanying photo.  If my house were to survive the hurricane winds, I thought about the good possibility that we would be without electricity for weeks, if not months, and I recalled the time a few years ago when less-than-hurricane winds left us without electricity for the better part of a day, during which time the temperature in the house, with windows boarded up, rose to an almost unbearable 115 degrees.  Those fears of living far outweighed the fear of death.

 shack

The conviction that I will survive death in a greater reality does much to mitigate the fear of death, whether from a hurricane or bodily functions shutting down.  Many of my friends share such a conviction, but I have encountered a number of nihilists who say they do not fear death because they’ll never know it when they are dead.  They think like Lucretius, the Epicurean poet, that death is a restful sleep. “Personally, I’ve never been persuaded by the argument that ‘oblivion’ is a terrible fate,” lawyer David Niose, a past-president of the American Humanist Association, expressed this humanist view in Psychology Today a few years ago. “Sure, given the choice of living or not – to be or not to be – I’d really prefer the former, but sooner or later we must all come down to the homestretch in life, and to many humanists the non-existence that awaits at the finish line is nothing to be feared.”  Niose added that he expects non-existence after death to be much like it was before birth, which he didn’t mind at all. 

Niose’s seemingly fearless approach may very well work for some, especially those still fairly distant from what they see as the abyss of nothingness.  I recall a friend with somewhat the same heroism, if it can be so called, until he was diagnosed with a terminal illness.  As I tried to console him in his final days, his fear manifested as severe trembling and a paralyses that prevented him from even talking.  “The moralist must hold his breath and keep his muscles tense; and so long as this athletic attitude is possible all goes well – morality suffices,” wrote William James, one of the pioneers of psychology.  “But the athletic attitude tends ever to break down and it inevitably does break down even in the most stalwart when the organism begins to decay, or when morbid fears invade the mind.”

Carl Jung, another pioneer of modern psychology, took something of a Pascalian view.  He wrote that “death is an important interest, especially to an aging person.”  He added that everyone should have a myth about death, “for reason shows him nothing but the dark pit into which he is descending. Myth,  however, can conjure up other images for him, helpful and enriching pictures of life in the land of the dead.  If he believes in them, or greets them with some measure of credence, he is being just as right or just as wrong as someone who does not believe in them.  But while the man who despairs marches toward nothingness, the one who has placed his faith in the archetype follows the tracks of life and lives right into his death.  Both, to be sure, remain in uncertainty, but the one lives against his instincts, the other with them.”

Jung likened life’s energy flow to that of “a runner who strives with the greatest effort and utmost expenditures of strength to reach his goal.”  Sooner or later, however, the striving ends.  “With the same intensity and irresistibility with which it strove upward before middle age, life now descends; for the goal no longer lies on the summit, but in the valley where the ascent began.”  As psychologist Herman Feifel noted, Jung stressed the point that the rationalistic view of death – that of the nihilist – tends to isolate man from his psychological self and underlines the need for psychology to digest certain parapsychological findings.  Many nihilists, however, are successful in repressing the idea of complete extinction, of obliteration, by engaging in mostly meaningless world activities – reading fiction, playing golf, watching ball games, whatever, until death comes knocking.   

Jung’s runner analogy, Niose’s metaphorical reference to the “homestretch,” and James’s to the “athletic attitude” all bring to mind the marathon running experience.  If I accurately recall the physiological aspects of running the 26.2-mile endurance challenge, the runner depends on carbohydrates in his or her body for energy and then somewhere around 20 miles, when the “carbs” are depleted, he or she switches over to fat burning to avoid “hitting the wall,” as it is called.  The runner not properly conditioned to switch from carbs to fat burning will hit that wall and painfully struggle to make it to the finish line.  As I see it, the nihilist is much like that unconditioned runner.  As he approaches life’s homestretch, his heroic approach dissipates and he begins to flounder.  His early courage is now seen as nothing more than bravado.  There may be exceptions, but I don’t recall having met one. 

Most of the nihilists I have encountered over the years are rebels against religion and have little or no understanding of the survival evidence gathered outside of orthodox religion.  When such evidence is called to their attention, they’ll check Wikipedia and parrot the debunker’s view of whatever phenomenon is being cited. They apply terrestrial standards to celestial matters of which science has no clue.  They assume that it is necessary to prove an anthropomorphic God before considering the evidence for survival of the consciousness at death.  They further assume that the afterlife is nothing more than strumming harps and praising an angry God, something that seems inconceivable for an eternity.  They are victims of scientism, scoffing and sneering at all those subscribing to “religious” superstitions.   
 
Alan Harrington, author of the 1969 book, The Immortalist, seems to have been a more objective humanist, or nihilist.  “An unfortunate awareness has overtaken our species,” he wrote. “Masses of men and women everywhere no longer believe that they have even the slightest chance of living beyond the grave.  The unbeliever pronounces a death sentence on himself.  For millions this can be not merely disconcerting but a disastrous perception.”

As Harrington viewed it, when people are deprived of rebirth vision, they “suffer recurring spells of detachment, with either violence or apathy to follow.”  Harrington saw mass-atheism as responsible for most, if not all, of society’s ills, including misplaced sexual energy.  “Orgies, husband and wife swaps, and the like, more popular than ever among groups of quite ordinary people, represent a mass assault on the mortal barrier,” he opined.  If Harrington were alive today, I suspect he would see much of the turmoil and chaos in today’s world resulting from nihilism. 

“The state of anxiety, the feeling of powerlessness and insignificance, and especially the doubt concerning one’s future after death, represent a state of mind which is practically unbearable for anybody,” wrote Erich Fromm, another humanist philosopher.

The nihilist usually interprets all that to suggest that those who are interested in an afterlife are not making the most of this life.  Sir Oliver Lodge, a renowned British physicist, was asked about this after devoting much time to psychical research.  “It is no doubt possible, as always, to overstep the happy mean, and by absorption in and premature concerns with future interests to lose the benefit and training of this present life,” he responded.  “But although we may rightly decide to live with full vigour in the present, and do our duty from moment to moment, yet in order to be full-flavoured and really intelligent beings – not merely with mechanical draft following the line of least resistance – we ought to be aware that there is a future, a future determined to some extent by action in the present; and it is only reasonable that we should seek to ascertain, roughly and approximately, what sort of future it is likely to be.”

Hurricane Douglas took a little turn and missed Hawaii by a hundred miles or so, allowing me to make that 1000-month milestone.  With other hurricanes expected to follow and with bodily functions gradually shutting down, I don’t know how many months I have left in this realm of existence, but the conviction that my consciousness will survive my physical death permits a certain peace of mind, one which I am pretty certain I would not have as a nihilist.  As the great philosopher and poet Goethe put it, “When a man is seventy-five he cannot help sometimes thinking about death. The thought of it leaves me perfectly calm, for I am convinced that our spirit is absolutely indestructible…it is like the sun which only seems to sink and in reality never sinks at all.”

Michael Tymn is the author of The Afterlife Revealed: What Happens After We Die, Resurrecting Leonora Piper: How Science Discovered the Afterlife, and Dead Men Talking: Afterlife Communication from World War I.
His forthcoming book, No One Really Dies: 25 Reasons to Believe in an Afterlife is due in January 2021.

Next blog post:  August 31


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Quoting Distinguished Scientists and Scholars on Survival

Posted on 03 August 2020, 16:04

It wasn’t long after the birth of modern Spiritualism in 1848 that scientists and scholars began investigating the phenomena.  Many of them started out with the intent of showing that all mediums were charlatans, but one by one they came to believe in the reality of mediumship and related psychic phenomena.  A few of them sat on the fence when it came to professing a belief in the spirit world, but others were more courageous.

Here are testimonials from the earliest researchers.  More recent researchers will be quoted in future posts:

Judge John W. Edmonds (1816-1874) – After serving in both houses of the New York legislature, including president of the Senate, Edmonds was elevated to the New York State Supreme Court and became its Chief Justice.  He began his investigation of mediums in 1851, assuming that he would expose them as frauds.

But all this, and much, very much more of a cognate nature went to show me that there was a high order of intelligence involved in this new phenomenon – an intelligence outside of, and beyond, mere mortal agency; for there was no other hypothesis which I could devise or hear of that could at all explain that, whose reality is established by the testimony of tens of thousands, and can easily be ascertained by anyone who take the trouble to inquire …

Governor Nathaniel P. Tallmadge (1795-1864) – Educated as a lawyer, Tallmadge served as a United States Senator from New York and as Governor of the Territory of Wisconsin. He initially considered mediumship a “delusion,” but was prompted to investigate by the testimony of Judge John W. Edmonds. He soon began communicating with the spirit of his old friend, John C. Calhoun, former vice-president of the United States.  On one occasion, Calhoun asked him to bring a guitar.

I have received numerous communications from [Calhoun] from the time of my commencing this investigation.  They have been received through rapping, writing, and speaking mediums, and are of the most extraordinary character…I have heard the guitar played by the most skillful and scientific hands, but I never could have conceived of that instrument being able to produce sounds of such marvelous and fascinating beauty, power, and even grandeur as this invisible performer that night executed. 

Professor Augustus De Morgan (1806-1871) – Considered one of the most brilliant mathematicians of the 19th Century, De Morgan became chairman of the mathematics department at University College in London at age 21.  He introduced “De Morgan’s Laws” and was a reformer in mathematical logic.  He began sitting with mediums in 1853.

…I have seen in my house frequently, various persons presenting themselves [as mediums].  The answers are given mostly by the table, on which a hand or two is gently placed, tilting up at the letters…I have no theory about it, but in a year or two something may turn up.  I am, however, satisfied of the reality of the phenomenon.  A great many other persons are as cognizant of these phenomena in their own houses as myself.  Make what you can of it if you are a philosopher. 

Professor Robert Hare, M.D.  (1751-1858) – An emeritus professor of chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania and world-renowned inventor, Hare denounced the “madness” being called “Spiritualism” and set out in 1853 to prove that the raps, taps, and table tilting purportedly bringing messages from the dead were either hallucinations or unconscious muscular actions on the part of those present.

I sincerely believe that I have communicated with the spirits of my parents, sister, brother, and dearest friends, and likewise with the spirits of the illustrious Washington and other worthies of the spirit world; that I am by them commissioned, under their auspices, to teach truth and to expose error.

Professor Johann K. F. Zöllner (1834-1882) – A professor of astronomy at Leipzig University, he contributed to measuring the brightness of the moon and of stars that could be seen.  His book, titled Transcendental Physics, was published in 1880.

We have acquired proof of the existence of an invisible world which can enter into relation with humanity.

Professor James J. Mapes (1806-1866) – A professor of chemistry and natural philosophy at the National Academy of Design in New York and later at the American Institute, Mapes is best remembered for his inventions in sugar refining and artificial fertilizers. He set out around 1854 to rescue his friends who were “running to mental seed and imbecility” over the mediumship epidemic. After investigating many mediums, Mapes changed his views. Moreover, both his wife and daughter became mediums.

The manifestations which are pertinent to the ends required are so conclusive in their character as to establish in my mind certain cardinal points.  These are:  First, there is a future state of existence, which is but a continuation of our present state of being…Second, that the great aim of nature, as shown through a great variety of spiritual existences is progression, extending beyond the limits of this mundane sphere…Third, that spirits can and do communicate with mortals, and in all cases evince a desire to elevate and advance those they commune with.


Biologist Alfred Russel Wallace (1823-1913) – Co-originator with Charles Darwin of the natural selection theory of evolution, Wallace, a naturalist who provided Darwin with his parallel theory before Darwin went public with their two theories, was a hard-core materialist until he began investigating mediums in 1865.  He soon became one of Spiritualism’s greatest missionaries. 

My position is that the phenomena of Spiritualism in their entirety do not require further confirmation.  They are proved quite as well as facts are proved in other sciences.

Sir William Crookes (1832-1919) – A physicist and chemist, he discovered the element thallium and was a pioneer in radioactivity.  He invented the radiometer, the spinthariscope, and a high-vacuum tube that contributed to the discovery of the x-ray. He was knighted in 1897 and served as president of the British Association for the Advancement of Science.  He set out in 1870 to drive “the worthless residuum of spiritualism” into the “unknown limbo of magic and necromancy.”  However, after thorough investigations of Daniel D. Home and Florence Cook, he changed his views. 

[The phenomena] point to the existence of another order of human life continuous with this, and demonstrate the possibility in certain circumstances of communication between this world and the next.

Sir William Barrett, FRS (1844-1925) – Professor of physics at the Royal College of Science in Dublin for 37 years, he developed a silicon-iron alloy important to the development of the telephone and in construction of transformers.  His research on entoptic vision contributed to the invention of the entoptiscope and a new optometer.  He was knighted in 1912 for his contributions to science.
I am personally convinced that the evidence we have published decidedly demonstrates (1) the existence of a spiritual world, (2) survival after death, and (3) of occasional communication from those who have passed over.

Professor Camille Flammarion (1842-1925) – A world renowned astronomer, Flammarion founded the French Astronomical Society and was known for his study of Mars. He was a pioneer in the use of balloon to study the stars. He investigated psychic phenomena, including mediumship, for more than 50 years.
I do not hesitate to affirm my conviction, based on personal examination of the subject, that any man who declares the phenomena to be impossible is one who speaks without knowing what he is talking about; and, also that any man accustomed to scientific observation – provided that his mind is not biased by preconceived opinions – may acquire a radical and absolute certainty of the reality of the facts alluded to. 

Frederic W. H. Myers, M.A.  (1843-1901) – After graduating from Cambridge in 1864, he became a lecturer in classical literature there while also serving as inspector of schools at Cambridge.  Although not educated as a psychologist, he developed, independent of Freud, a theory of the subliminal self. University of Geneva psychology professor Theordor Flournoy opined that Myers name should be joined to those of Copernicus and Darwin, completing “the triad of geniuses” who most profoundly revolutionized scientific thought.  He was one of the founders of the Society for Psychical Research.

I will here briefly state what facts they are which our recorded apparitions, intimations, messages of the departing and the departed, have, to my mind actually proved:  a) In the first place, they prove survival pure and simple; the persistence of the spirit’s life as a structural law of the universe; the inalienable heritage of each several soul; b) …they prove that between the spiritual and the material worlds an avenue of communication does in fact exist; that which we call the dispatch and the receipt of telepathic messages, or the utterance and the answer of prayer and supplication; c)…they prove that the surviving spirit retains, at least in some measure, the memories and the loves of earth…”

Sir Oliver Lodge, D. Sc., FRS  (1851-1940) – Professor of physics at University College in Liverpool, England and later principal at the University of Birmingham, Lodge achieved world fame for his pioneering work in electricity, including the radio and spark plug.  Lodge was knighted in 1902 for his contributions to science. He became interested in psychical research in 1884 and sat extensively with Leonora Piper and Gladys Osborne Leonard.

I tell you with all my strength of the conviction which I can muster that we do persist, that people still continue to take an interest in what is going on, that they know far more about things on this earth than we do, and are able from time to time to communicate with us…I do not say it is easy, but it is possible, and I have conversed with my friends just as I can converse with anyone in this audience now.

Professor Charles Richet, M.D., Ph.D. (1850-1909) – Professor of physiology at the University of Paris Medical School, Richet was considered a world authority on nutrition in health and in disease. He won the Nobel Prize in 1913 for his work on allergic reactions. While convinced of the reality of mediumship, he remained publicly agnostic toward survival. 

It seems to me the facts are undeniable.  I am convinced that I have been present at realities.  Certainly I cannot say in what materialization consists.  I am ready to maintain that there is something profoundly mysterious in it which will change from top to bottom our ideas on nature and on life.

Dr. Richard Hodgson (1855-1905) – After earning his M.A. and LL.D at the University of Melbourne, Hodgson moved to England and entered the University of Cambridge as a scholar studying moral sciences.  Upon graduation, he taught poetry and philosophy at University Extension, then the philosophy of Herbert Spenser at Cambridge before becoming a full-time psychical researcher in 1887.  He had hundreds of sittings with Leonora Piper over 18 years.

I had but one object, to discover fraud and trickery. Frankly, I went to Mrs. Piper with Professor James of Harvard University about twelve years ago with the object of unmasking her…I entered the house profoundly materialistic, not believing in the continuance of life after death; today I say I believe.  The truth has been given to me in such a way as to remove from me the possibility of a doubt.

James H. Hyslop, Ph.D., LL.D. (1854-1920) – After receiving his Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University in 1887 and his LL.D. from University of Wooster, Hyslop taught philosophy at Lake Forest University, Smith College, and Bucknell University before joining the faculty of Columbia in 1895.  He authored three textbooks, Elements of Logic (1892), Elements of Ethics (1895), and Problems of Philosophy (1905) before becoming a full-time psychical researcher.

Personally, I regard the fact of survival after death as scientifically proved.  I agree that this opinion is not upheld in scientific quarters.  But this is neither our fault nor the fault of the facts.  Evolution was not believed until long after it was proved.  The fault lay with those who were too ignorant or too stubborn to accept the facts.  History shows that every intelligent man who has gone into this investigation, if he gave it adequate examination at all, has come out believing in spirits; this circumstance places the burden of proof on the shoulders of the skeptic.

Michael Tymn is the author of The Afterlife Revealed: What Happens After We Die, Resurrecting Leonora Piper: How Science Discovered the Afterlife, and Dead Men Talking: Afterlife Communication from World War I.
His forthcoming book, No One Really Dies: 25 Reasons to Believe in an Afterlife is due later in 2020.


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When Skeptics Attack: Skeptical Organizations and Websites by Craig Weiler – If you really want to get to the heart of skepticism, the best way to do that is to look at the organizations that skeptics create and see how they operate. The behavior of these organizations is the behavior of the individuals, writ large. There are two national organizations worth considering: the James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) and the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (CSI). Read here
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