I think I'm done with the discoveries for awhile. I'm continuing to spot-check my sequel, "Mathew Franklin Whittier in his own world," but what I'm finding, now, are the little mistakes in grammar, redundancies, and awkward spots in the narrative. Once in awhile I'll find a substantive mistake, like saying Mathew and Abby lived in Dover, New Hampshire for two years, when it was only one year. I can probably keep on finding things like that, but eventually, when it gets to the point that I've spent an hour or two and haven't found any mistakes, I'll leave the rest to "human error." I just don't want a skeptical audience to be able to dismiss the work out-of-hand as being amateurish. It's sort of like what they say about women in the workplace, that they have to rise to a higher standard because they are always being judged more critically.
I think the writing in both books is at a very high level, now. This simply makes what could be some tedious material, less tiring and more comfortable to read.
My stats for November and the beginning of December are in, and I thought I'd give a little "state of the nation," here, in summary. Last month there was a huge jump in site visits, presumably because a like-minded filmmaker linked to my documentary during November. The highest number of unique visits in one day was 1,133, an unheard of number here. I have gotten into the 400's a few times, and once I think I hit an all-time high of something like 525. Now, it has settled down into the 400's, going occasionally into the 500's. That is still considerably up from the norm, which is in the 300's.
I'm aware that these are very small numbers for the internet. As I've mentioned, before, my former sales agent for the documentary once told me, "Boys who spend a couple weekends shooting their own horror movie, sell more copies than you do."
The filmmaker who so graciously provided some links to my own film, also showed me how to formally request YouTube to remove bootleg postings of it. I have now had about 10 of the pesky things taken down. I left them alone for years, on the same philosophical basis that Mathew Franklin Whittier permitted people to steal and claim his work--because more people would be exposed to the information thereby. I made that decision a long time ago, before I had even learned of Mathew (or, at least, before I knew he had this habit). But recently I re-thought the whole thing. In hindsight, I am not happy with these decisions made in my past life. We are here to learn from our mistakes--and it was a mistake for Mathew to let dishonest, worldly, ambitious men falsely claim his spiritual, high-minded writing. I've discussed this subject in a recent blog entry. I decided that I should change my policy, and prevent these people from stealing my work.
Something over half a million people saw my film because of these viral postings. But what did they see? In many cases, a poor-quality version taken from an early VHS release; often, a great number of commercials; and in one case, the titles sped up so that the music behind them sounded like the Chipmunks. I never watched any of them, so I don't know what else they might have either inserted, or deleted. One thing I know they deleted was my company logo, "Gold Thread Video Productions," at the beginning (which shows that they knew they were doing something wrong); and they may have deleted this website URL from the end. So not only didn't the viewers know who had created the video, more importantly, they didn't know what consciousness had created it. These viral posters were using my creation to draw viewers to their material, in other words; rather than it drawing people to my material, which is here primarily as a service. They were using it, in many cases, either to ultimately fatten their bottom line, or to promote their philosophical viewpoint (as, for example, the Buddhists who posted it). Traditional Buddhism teaches "no-Self," which is a grave error. The correct teaching is "no-self," not "no-Self." I do not want my work to support that error, which thereby hurts more people than it helps. Just as an example.
So my own posting of my film on YouTube, has had only 2,000 views, as opposited to over 500,000 on the combined viral postings. If success is measured by numbers, I have cut my own throat. But I think I have learned something from my experience as Mathew. I am going to put it into practice, and let's see where it leads this time.
As to the other pages being viewed on this website in November, the article about "James, the Submarine Man" is still at the top. It means that my presentation of somebody else's case is of far more interest, apparently, than my own. I make it available for the advancement of the field as a whole, for educational purposes. I am personally disappointed that people don't take my case as seriously as they take Rick Brown's case. But this isn't primarily about me, personally (even though some may think it is).
My old article about my Guru, Meher Baba, comes next. That has enjoyed a resurgence ever since it was posted in a closed group for followers. It means the additional views are "preaching to the choir," which is fine, but I'm more pleased when new people are exposed to the information.
Capt. Robert Snow's case is being viewed, but it may be a result of him promoting his new book, which has nothing to do with reincarnation. Then comes "Continuing Love," my article about the possibility of continuing a soul-mate relationship after the death of one partner. That article received 223 views in November. How people find it, I don't know. They don't buy my book on that subject, being, apparently, content to read the article. Perhaps the seed is planted: "Somebody else is doing this. It's an option."
Next comes Abby's journal, which link has been taken off the home page since I moved here to Portland in February (just as this Updates link is off, now). She had 192 visits, so apparently she has her regulars. Immediately following is my (now disabled) Updates page--the one that new visitors will see, announcing that I have discontinued it. That also got 192 hits, which suggests that every month, 192 new people were checking it out.
Among the top 30, 152 looked at my supporting page for my first book, "Mathew Franklin Whittier in his own words," without purchasing it. Another 111 people found their way to a joint presentation of that book, and my book about my ongoing relationshp with Abby; but again, none purchased either book. The Archives page--where, as you know, one can access this live blog, received 96 visits, some portion of which was me, testing it. Maybe I did that more than I realized. I've stopped hitting that page online, so from now on, this stat will reflect only other people's visits.
Nine people watched my video interview on the Interviews page in November. (Presumably, since they don't buy my books or express any further interest, they simply don't believe me, and the chain is broken at that point.) Eight people somehow found my old spoof of Einstein at the Unemployment Office. I'm not even sure how they found it--maybe it's linked from the News and Announcements page. A handful listened to my old radio interviews; no fewer than 41 downloaded Seba Smith's satirical book on the Life of Andrew Jackson (historians incorrectly cite Smith as the originator of Mathew's style in America); and 35 downloaded the image of the editorial page of the July 28, 1832 New York "Constellation," which reflects Mathew's work as the junior editor. Somebody is linking to it, presumably, in some context. Perhaps they like the leading editorial, "Use All Gently." I was just thinking, before I started writing this entry, that one could make the case that Mathew was a hypocrite, because, in his satirical writing, he didn't always live up to this ideal. But really, he was sincere--he just found himself up against some very nasty, ignorant foes, and concluded that sharp sarcasm was his best weapon against them. People do have conflicting ideals, and they can't always reconcile them. Remember that Mathew was raised Quaker, when you are considering the question of who authored these editorials in the "Constellation."
December's first couple of days is also revealing. On the first, 546 people visited this website; then, we are starting with 414 for the 2nd (the overnight contingent not being reported yet). Abby's journal is fairly high, with 17 visits so far; the article on "Continuing Love", and the two pages that explain my books, all come in at 10 each. The Updates (the official one) comes in at 9, while the now-hidden Archives page is eight. That probably means that in two days, the same four people accessed the direct link to the Archives on each day. That would be you.
Eight people also accessed the most-recent entry of 12/1.
That means that right now, this blog may be read by four regulars. Oh, I also see that an old update--one in which I minutely analyze another case, from 3/1/13, was also visited six times. Someone is no-doubt linking to it. Perhaps a skeptic likes it, because I found that case wanting. So they ignore my entire pro-reincarnation presentation, and link only to the one case I shot down, in confirmation of their world view? I wonder...
So, in effect, I am writing to posterity, with four observers. It's possible that as this month's stats progress, I'll see evidence of a few more people having found these continuing entries. Meanwhile, it's not affecting the number of people who look at my books (without buying them). There's plenty to see on this website. I'm just not exposing myself to as many potential job difficultes this way. I did find out that the incident which prompted me to go into hiding, as it were, was a false alarm. But it may have been a timely wake-up call. Better to keep this hidden.
I have an online radio interview coming up towards the end of this month. It will be pre-recorded, and I'll make a public announcement of some kind when it's available. It's a relatively short interview, so depending on the consciousness of the interviewer, and what kind of questions I'm asked, I may not be able to get into anything very substantial. I have never seen any interest generated by radio interviews, and not a single sale (i.e., of my documentary) ever resulted, that I know of. Writing recently to some 15 selected radio hosts, I was only able to secure this one interview, plus another one tentatively scheduled for middle of next year. So I'm not expecting too much from it--but then, it only takes the right person.
Stephen Sakellarios, M.S.
Music opening this page: "Peekaboo," by The Free Design,
from the album, "Cosmic Peekaboo"