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1/3/19
During my five days off work, I'm sleeping longer, if not better. Being just up, and having checked mail and a few other things online, I think I'm better-able to address the topic of the New Year than I was last entry. So perhaps I'll try again.

My cat, Gwendolyn, is still hanging in there. She has been diagnosed with a cancerous tumor of the colon. She's not eating, and is weak and obviously not happy. But in caring for her more intensively, we are having some quality time; I think Abby gave me the correct inwardly-prompted advice to go the "hospice" route rather than to pre-emptively euthanize her. Obviously this is one of those personal, individual decisions. But I do see that I am going through a process, while she is going through a process. Abby told me something interesting (if I may share it) in personal channeling. She said that this period of suffering will act as a purging, enabling Gwen to spend more time with Abby at her vibrational level of the astral world. Which, by all accounts, is pretty nice...

I had another thought I wanted to share, before I get into 2019. Lately, going through this period of feeling like a "raw nerve," as I anticipate the death of my long-time friend, my past-life memories are more accessible. It's an intuitive thing--not a matter of "dates and figures" which are most-easly provable. But that intuitive sense is perhaps twice as strong as it usually is. What it brings home to me, is that things I had intimations of, as past-life impressions, were, in fact, accurate.

Here's the thing. I wrote my book as a reincarnation researcher; and it was addressed to what you might call the lowest common denominator of belief or acceptance. Another way of saying this is that I attempted to prove every piece of evidence to skeptics. That is a two-edged sword; because you are catching things that are implausible, but at the same time you are undervaluing things that are genuine. For example, in the "Scorecard summary" in the Appendix of my first book, I list something over 90 past-life impressions, and I rank them on a scale of plausbility. Only a handful I consider proven to the highest skeptical standard; another 20 or 30 I consider quite strong. I also indicate how likely or unlikely it is that I could have seen the information earlier, by normal means--addressing the "cryptomnesia" or false memory objection.

While, actually, perhaps 80 of those 90 impressions--or maybe even all of them--are real past-life memories. So by proving things to skeptics, I am making my case appear far weaker than it actually is.

The examples are legion--I wouldn't even know which one to pick. It's as though it's all coming in on me, lately--the whole thing is true. Here's an example. I think I've identified the house in which Mathew and Abby first rented, when they moved here to Portland, Maine. It still stands at 130 Pleasant Street, and I learned that it was probably built, along with several others, when that street was established in the 1790's. You can see it for yourself on Google Street View. It was built in the old saltbox style, though it may not have the interior structure used in earlier decades. I remembered that Abby took silks that she had kept from her wealthy family of origin; or, that I had given her, to help her feel more at home--and that because the walls were unsightly, she had hung them up as tapestries. They were of different colors, but one was a deep blue. Now, I am red-green colorblind. So if they were purple, today, I would see them and report them as deep blue. This is stated in one of the opening chapters of my sequel, where I show a current image of the house, and one from the 1929 tax records.

Then, later on in the book, I delve into Mathew's authorship of "The Raven," discovering that he worked as a literary critic for a New York City newspaper at that time (early 1845); further research showed me that the future Elizabeth Barrett Browning had published a book of poems in 1844, the previous year, with a poem which contained a line so similar to one in "The Raven," that people were charging plagiarism--i.e., not of Mathew, but of Barrett. Poe did damage control, when he released his compilation, "The Raven and Other Poems," by dedicating it in gushing tones to Barrett. He was pretending to acknowledge her "influence," so as not to have to admit he had stolen the poem, lock, stock and barrel, from Mathew. (It appears that Poe was really quite the con artist, and you can get a sense of it from just that one maneuver.)

What happened, as I ferretted out the clues, was that Mathew had sent poems to Barrett, at least two of which she personalized slightly and published as her own work in a compilation entitled, simply, "Poems." One of these, "Lady Geraldine's Courtship," contains a line about purple curtains which is very suspiciously similar to a line about silken purple curtains in "The Raven." This is what had everybody talking.

Technically, I could have remembered that line from "The Raven," and fooled myself into "remembering" a deep blue silk tapestry in Mathew and Abby's first rental house in Portland.* The skeptic will save his denying ass that way--but it is just mental gymnastics. No such thing happened. I would not have inserted my colorblindness into such an unconscious memory. I would have said, "purple curtains" if I was subconsciously remembering a line in the poem, even if today, I can't actually see purple curtains.

But all this fighting with unseen or anticipated skeptics is exhausting--and moreover, it is artificially limiting. I did remember those curtains; and if I did, it's obvious why the reference appears in both poems. Mathew must have made curtains of them after Abby passed--one of the few things he retained of hers. But after he had gotten rid of all her possessions and everything that so painfully reminded him of her, when he moved into a somewhat later stage of grief, every little thing he had retained assumed a huge significance. Including those purple curtains. This is why they appear in "Lady Geraldine's Courtship"--which is based on the true story of their actual courtship--and "The Raven," which is a poem about his faith crisis. The reason the lines seem so similar, stylistically is, of course, that the same author (Mathew) had written them during roughly the same period, which was probably during the year following Abby's death in March of 1841.

This is not a "smoking gun." Taken in isolation, it can be easily "dispatched" by a skeptic. But that skeptic would be dead wrong. It was a real past-life memory--though, being presented in the second book, it isn't even counted in the 90 impressions found in the Scorecard summary.

Likewise my suddenly memory of driving up a hill with Abby, in my current neighborhood, just a few blocks from where I am writing this, today. After I had that memory, and took a photograph of it for the sequel, I thought to myself, "It really doesn't seem steep enough for us to make such a fuss over it." And in the book, I tried to explain it--maybe Abby was overly nervous, and Mathew was teasing her, etc. Then, some weeks later, I walked a different route, which took me just beyond the crest of that hill. There, I realized, for the first time that it had been cut into about six or seven feet, meaning that it used to be that much higher, and steeper. They cut the crest off--it would originally have gotten quite steep right at the top. When that was done, I still don't know, because the historical society referred me to Public Works, and Public Works never got back to me. They were in the process of moving, so I'm giving them some time to get that accomplished. I'm guessing, however, that there's a very good chance this was done after 1839.

Here again, I drive that route fairly often. Technically, I could have seen it, and subconsciously generated a false past-life memory, based on extrapolating what the hill looked like before the crest was shaved down. But that's not the way past-life memory operates, as near as I can tell from my study. My subconscious mind doesn't generate false past-life emotions to match some intellectually, unconsiously derived formulation. It means that I actually remembered the emotions of the experience--of Abby and I nervously laughing about climbing this hill, as we were headed out of the city for a day in the country--before I noticed that it had once been considerably steeper.

This one, also, the skeptic can easily chuck into the useless pile. But have you seen the intellectual level, and the tenor, of skeptical comments below videos on YouTube? Why do I even care what 90% of these people think?**

Another example I believe I've already shared recently, but it's precisely relevant to the topic, so I'll touch on it, again. I identified several songs that Abby used to play to Mathew on piano--probably at this same house. That's a long story as to how I came across them. I identified and purchased two books of sheet music, one of which Abby may have plausibly checked out from the Portland Sacred Music Society. (It once belonged to that Society, and has on its cover a notice which reads, "Not to be taken from the Hall without permission from the Librarian.") It is--is "profoundly clear" a phrase? I'll use it. It's profoundly clear, to me, that one of the songs Mathew and Abby loved, was a glee called "The Mayfly." This one is found in the second book, "Kingsley's Social Choir, Vol. I," and again, I won't go into how I discovered it. There's a logical evidence trail as a backstory, here, having to do with Mathew's employment in Dover, NH. In any case, every time I play a particular part, the words reading "what a little day," rising up from G above middle C to D, I can distinctly hear, in my "mind's ear," a group of tenors singing this line. Every single time. But I have never heard this song before I began this study and stumbled upon this book. You can't find it on YouTube--and if you can't find a song on YouTube, it's obscure. There is a historical record of the composer, one Dr. Calcott, which doesn't concern us, here. The point is, I can't use this to prove the validity of past-life memory to anyone else. But it certainly proves it to me, personally.

It so happens there is one choral performance of a song by the composer, John Wall Calcott, on YouTube, but not of the one in question. It will, however, give you some idea of what I'm remembering. For those of you who might read this when YouTube is just a historical footnote, the song is called "Farewell to Locaber."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t40SMRr2tBc

My books are as long as they are, because I geared them towards the most adamant, stubborn skeptics. I have often thought about writing a version that is geared toward more reasonable people. But that, I think, will have to be done by somebody in the future--at a time when the case, itself, is generally acknowleged as being verified. If I did that now, my books would simply join the ranks of all the other reincarnation cases, and novels, which are inadequately proven. My work is not "suggestive of reincarnation" (and I'm not a scientist, so I am not forced to couch it that way). I nailed it, many times over, so that it stays nailed. But there is a principle which says, if you've proven part of it, the rest of it is likely to be genuine, as well. Skeptics in denial will "eat" the portion that is forced on them, and continue to deny the rest; whereas a rational person, having eaten a portion of it, will admit that the rest of the dish is probably quite tasty, as well. A restaurant reviewer, having eaten six representative bites of a dish, will not report in his magazine, "The six bites I had to take in my role as a reviewer were excellent, but I can't vouch for the rest of the plate." That is, he won't, unless he is really being an asshole.

I haven't left myself much time to talk about the New Year, but I won't ignore it altogether. I honestly don't have a clue what to expect. If the interview I recently completed comes to the attention of the right prominent figure, public recognition for my work could take off like a rocket. Or, it could languish as it has been doing for, what, 20 years now. I went public with this website in 1998, and have been on the margins all that time. So there is no way for me to predict 2019. I am just trying to keep things steady, here, with my personal health and finances.

It appears that three people are reading this now-hidden blog. But there are some other weird things showing up in the stats. I see it primarily in the first few days of the month. For example, as of today, representing the 2nd up until evening (the stats are 1-1/2 days behind), I'm seeing that 13 people have listened to the page-introducing audio clip, "When Love is Young," by the Free Design. I can't remember which entries I used that music for, but it's been awhile. Did someone like it so much they played it over 13 times? Or did someone share that particular entry with 12 other people? Scanning down, I see that the music clip "Weightless" by Billy Goodrum (a follower of my Guru, with some national standing as a musician) was played 10 times--but I'm not seeing the URL for the corresponding page.

Moving down to the "Top 10 of 984 Total URLs by KBytes" field, two pdf pages have been looked at--each of them once. These are Mathew's very first "Ethan Spike" humorous sketch, and Mathew's report about the "Millerites," published in November 1845, and uncharacteristically signed with his own name. Thus, whoever this is (assuming it's the same person), is looking at historially known pieces published by Mathew--two pieces we can prove were his by conventional academic standards. Who would do that? Probably somebody in academia. This suggests, to me, that I have the secret interest of somebody in mainstream academia, who is cherry-picking that portion of my evidence which is acceptable to him or her, while ignoring that portion which wouldn't fit with his or her understanding. And yet, to find these two pieces, they must have read through a large number of entries--or, at least, somebody must have.

You see, I based my method on that used by Capt. Robert Snow, who was in charge of homocide investigation for the City of Indianapolis; and that used by Angela Grubbs, a research attorney. Both are professional investigators. And I've been at this, now, for almost a decade. I've gotten pretty good at detective logic. People who write me off as indulging in magical thinking, will someday find that there was nothing wrong with my thinking, at all--and that by dismissing my work so casually, they were indulging in said magical thinking. At any rate, I can get quite a bit out of these stats. I never attempt to identify individuals. That only happens by accident if someone buys my books through the online store--I automatically get the purchaser's e-mail address, then. I'd prefer not to, but it's a free online service and I can't quibble with their software. I never do anything with it. But I can derive trends from these statistics.

Based on these trends, I see that people in academia do haunt these back pages. Most probably, they take away from it what they already believe. But it only takes one to stretch beyond what he or she thinks they know. That's why I can't predict anything for 2019.

Again, I'll announce in this blog, and on the home page and the official Updates page, when my recent radio interview goes live. Here's a spot of admitted paranoia--I'm not saying what the show is, lest someone lean on them not to air it before it's posted. I think that's about a million chances to one--but I'm not taking any chances.

Best regards,

Stephen Sakellarios, M.S.

*I don't know that poem by heart--ever since I first encountered it in grade school, I have found it very difficult to read. So I actually didn't know, or remember, that there was a line in it about purple curtains when I set down my memory about the tapestries.

**Some skeptics, however, are at a high intellectual level. For example, I must very sadly report that Dr. Jim Tucker was one of the skeptics who treated me this way--pretending to himself (even though he is a trained psychiatrist!) that he was being scientifically rigorous, while actually behaving towards me like a garden-variety cynic. If Tucker ever reads this, I will simply tell him that he has knowingly called a good ball out, and he will know what that means.

 

Music opening this page, "The Inspector," by Wally Badarou,
from the album, "Echoes"

 

   

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