I don't feel very focused this morning, but at the same time I feel that I should write. This being the beginning of a new month, such that I have the complete website statistics on-hand for the previous month of February, I thought I'd use the stats as a jumping-off place. It is sometimes instructive to look at the figures for a complete month, vs. the beginning of a new one. That's because the stats give me the daily unique visits for the top 30 pages; so that the complete month gives me an overall figure of popularity, but the beginning of the next month reveals which of the more obscure pages are being seen.
Looking first at February, the most visited page is my article on my method of reincarnation research, entitled "How to Prove Reincarnation (with a Method Anyone Can Use)." It came in with 414 reads, a phenomenal number for this website. It has gradually been growing in popularity over the past few months, indicating that someone with a large website started linking to it.
Next in line is my video interviews. My own self-shot interview at the top was seen 11 times in February. However, in the statistic showing the top 10 by kilabytes, of the 11 interviews on the page, only mine registers. This suggests to me that of the 401 people visiting this page, eleven chose to play some portion of my interview (even a few seconds, perhaps), but hardly anyone else played any of them. They just hit the page for a few seconds, and either said "This looks boring" or "I'm outta here!"
Next are the links, and then someone else's essay on Houdini which I rescued from internet oblivion by mirroring it my site several years ago. In eighth place is a page about Australian reincarnation researcher Peter Ramster; and then my long-standing article about my Guru, Meher Baba. That got 235 visits in February. I don't advertise it, and it is buried half-way down my Articles page, but apparently people are linking to it directly, or finding it in search engines.
Finally, in 10th place, with 227 visits (minus those I made, myself), is this page, the "Updates." That's about eight visits per day. I don't know how many read beyond the first paragraph; I also don't know how many are regulars, such that I am preaching to the choir.
Moving down, I see that in the twelfth spot is a satirical life of Andrew Jackson. I downloaded that pdf file from the internet years ago, and probably linked to it from one of these Updates. Somebody apparently found it and is linking to it...and I suppose people in academia must be downloading it from that link. But this was written by Seba Smith in the 19th century. Smith is one of the writers who pioneered the style that I, in my past life as Mathew Franklin Whittier, adopted and developed. So I feel I owe it to him to let people find it. His ignoramus character, Major Jack Downing, seems to be writing a sympathetic biography of Jackson--but it's actually a scathing satire, because behind the mind of this conservative character is the liberal mind of his creator, Seba Smith. Who was it who said that if we don't learn from history, we are doomed to repeat it? Enough said.
In the 14th spot, after my "News and Announcements" page, is another article, "Continuing Love." When I discovered my past life in the 19th century, I also discovered my soul-mate, Abby, who was Mathew's first wife, still on the "other side." I learned that she not only wanted to contact me, she wanted to continue our relationship if I was capable of it, i.e., if I had enough faith to sustain it. I later learned that Mathew had attempted to do just that, about 10 years after her passing, for a couple of years. A lack of faith, and the demands of the flesh, apparently caused him to get side-tracked with a young (physical) look-alike, and eventually to seek a practical marriage. This time, I have been able to sustain it, at least, in my late 50's and early 60's. Our seventh anniversary--which I count from the date that a medium brought us together, in March of 2010--is coming up in a week or so.
Two spots down is Abby's blog, or what I feel she prefers to call her journal. For years, now, I have been attempting to give her a voice in this world via channeling. I don't claim that this is verbatim communication, but neither, I believe, is it entirely imagination. What's interesting--or, one thing that's interesting--about this blog, is that Mathew attempted the same thing, on at least two occasions, writing letters to the editor in-character as Abby (after having submitted several of her stories posthumously). Another interesting element, here, is that Mathew was expert at writing such letters in-character, including as female characters. That means that I am drawing upon my past-life talent when I write in-character as Abby, at the same time I am actually channeling her. So one may skeptically say, "Oh, he is just writing in-character," but then, how did I get the talent to do this? From my past-life expertise. So it is paranormal whichever way you slice it, because these are well-written by anyone's standards. I have had no formal training in writing, and while I edit these "Updates" extensively, I hardly edit those channeled entries of Abby's at all.
Two more spots down, at #18, is the supporting page for my book, "Mathew Franklin Whittier in his own words." This is with almost no-one actually going to the point-of-purchase at my online store (I can't track Amazon.com visitors), and no sales. But 138 people chose to at least briefly stop at this page. Perhaps, seeing the comparison photograph, they got scared and bamboozled! I have seen someone practically turn white, looking at a similar comparison photograph of Jeff Keene and Gen. John B. Gordon. And oh, by the way, I created the first visual comparison of Keen and Gordon--not Walter Semkiw. It was on my website before he published one in his book. I, actually, "discovered" Jeff Keene, inasmuch as he contacted me first. (People routinely stole ideas, if not entire stories, from Mathew, too, without giving him credit. The more things change...)
The supporting page for the little e-book specifically about my relationship with Abby, "Loving Abby in Truth and Spirit," doesn't even show up in the stats, and there are very rarely any sales. But it sells more often than my larger book, to the tune of perhaps four or five per year.
I don't advertise, beyond the on-site banner ad, and I don't use hype. The e-books are offered for $12.00, and $7.00, respectively, because I don't agree with the dishonest tactic of adding "99 cents" at the end. And I don't sell. But at least I can sleep at night. Come to think of it, I battle insomnia--as Mathew did, also. But if I could sleep at night, I would be able to...(?)
Now let's look at the first day of March, and see if there are any changes in this line-up.
We see, first of all, a total preliminary unique visit count of 387 for the first day (I say "preliminary," because the overnight contingent hasn't shown up yet, so it may well hit 400). Lately, it has been in the high 300's or low 400's, whereas for years, this website stood at about 250/day. In the top spot, here, is the interviews page, with 11 (including one view of my own interview, but none of the others), followed by Dr. Ramster, the links, and in the fourth spot, the article on proving reincarnation, with nine visits. Then comes the article on Meher Baba, and Abby's journal, with seven, followed by the News and Announcements, and my larger book's supporting page, with six. The "Continuing Love" article has had five visits, and this page doesn't even show up in the top 30. That's right, no-one saw the previous entry yesterday, at all.
So if I am making a dent, here, it is a very slow process, and seemingly, a very, very small dent. I also can't escape the conclusion that people like my ideas (especially, perchance, if they can use them), but they don't like me, personally, and they certainly have no intention of wasting money on my book.
Right now, coming out of the presidential election and seeing what is transpiring afterwards, I am primarily struck with the immense, appalling ignorance of society. I am, in effect, trying to take graduate-level material into a kindergarten class. The kids are running around chasing each other and shooting spit-balls, and I'm trying to lecture on marine biology or something.
You know what? Go back and read Seba Smith's satire on Andrew Jackson. Maybe it's a matter of first-things-first. But what I'm addressing is the core of the thing. It is not only conservatives who have discouraged me...it is also the progressives. Try to talk about reincarnation, or abortion, or philosophical Materialism, to a bunch of political progressives on Facebook. That is more depressing than trying to talk to political conservatives about Bernie Sanders or Jill Stein.
I just feel like washing my hands of y'all. Drown in your own soup, see if I care.
Stephen Sakellarios, M.S.
Audio opening this page: the sound of a skeptical mind opening, by the author