I have three competing topics, here, but two of them will lead somewhere I'd prefer not to go, so I'm going to summarily despatch them and move on.
Today was "Bean" day here at the house, meaning, "Interstellar Bean Day," the day that the History Channel plays the "Ancient Alien Series." I have it on for my Mom, who has dementia and doesn't know what's what, running all day. I learned that the Three Wise Men might have been aliens, or if they weren't aliens, they were directed to the Manger by an alien spacecraft, which legend now tells us was the "Star in the East." I learned that Bigfoot was either dropped here by aliens, or was the original humanoid on earth before the aliens created modern humans. That they were used as slaves to mine gold, and that the reason people can't catch them is that they still have superhuman, alien powers, and they still have some connection with the aliens. I learned that the Hindu god Shiva was really an alien, and that the Shiva-lingam, in Hindu temples, is really a representation of a nuclear power plant.
Need I say more?
At lunch, I watched parts of two far better presentations on YouTube. I have to look them up, here, before I can proceed...
Okay, this is Keith Clark's "This Life, Next Life," about evidence for the afterlife, and "This Life, Past Life," a sequel about the evidence for reincarnation. In this latter documentary, he began with General Patton, and then moved into a case by/about one Linda Tarazi, as set forth in her book, "Under the Inquisition." He describes several strong evidential proofs--I think it was all done with hypnotic regression, and she apparently came up with some complete names, going back several centuries. Clark says she came up with very specific information that there was no normal way of her having known before it was historically verified, like an obscure book with the pages still uncut, so no-one could have read it yet. If so, that's impressive (though I'm thinking, would they have cut all those pages of a rare book open for a wacky reincarnation researcher? not for me, they wouldn't have). The therapist must have been putting her way under, for her to get names like that. I barely managed to get into a light trance, myself. Even though her book is said to be 700 pages long, I was about to purchase it, when I discovered that it is in fictional, novel form. As a matter of policy, I don't read reincarnation novels, at least, not as evidence for past lives. I don't know how she mixes it up--whether the evidence is presented within the fictional narrative, or alternatively, stepping out of character. My book contains zero fictional dialogue, or any other fictional elements.
Then Clark moved into Dr. Marge Rieder's "Millboro" study, which I am thoroughly familiar with. I participated for three days, on two separate occasions, in her research. My intention was to try to independently evaluate her study. I found that it was genuine, and she was entirely sincere. I concluded, however, that her method was like that of an amateur archeologist, who doesn't carefully record each of the steps taken. It's more like someone who charges in with a shovel to try to find artifacts, without documenting the process so that other people can evaluate it for themselves. But I can vouch for the fact that she was digging, and she found things. She didn't try her diligent best to shoot down her own theories--to try to exhaust the normal explanations, first--but rather, to some extent, she made the most favorable interpretations of the data to fit her theory (a bit like the "Bean" people do on History Channel, but to a lesser degree). I'm actually mentioned in her third book, but her description of what transpired between us isn't accurate. I've mentioned this, before, and so won't go into it, now.* At least one of the photographs of evidence in that third book was taken by myself, and is credited, as I recall, to me. (Just in case you don't believe me.)
Now, why Mr. Clark has never seen fit to get in touch with me, as a fellow filmmaker and a colleague in afterlife studies, I don't know--and this is what I didn't want to be tempted to get into. Because I really do seem to be shunned by people who ostensibly should be my colleagues. My case is actually better than the first two cases he has cited in this program. Perhaps he doesn't know of me, at all.
I am continuing to digitize material, written, as I believe, by my past-life self at age 22/23, for the New York "Transcript," a penny daily newspaper in 1834/35. I came across something very interesting, today.
In early February, 1835, is an edition which it seems that Mathew was putting together by himself, perhaps as the substitute editor while the main editor was away. On a particular page, all of the articles are plausibly his, from an essay down to the short "fillers." One of the fillers actually appears to be an anecdote about himself, at the table in his boarding house. But the right-hand column is devoted to a case of plagiarism. This has to do with a well-known British writer named Edward Bulwer-Lytton, here called simply "Bulwer." He had recently published a book entitled "The Last Days of Pompeii," but the writer of the article charges him with having gotten the idea--and some portion of the substance--from a poem entitled the "Last Night of Pompeii," by American poet Sumner Lincoln Fairfield. He backs up his charge by quoting a lengthy section, previously quoted in North American Magazine. The plausibility of the charge doesn't concern me, here. I haven't keyed this one in, yet, but let us just say, that the charge has been well-documented, and is justified.
This is what Mathew--as I am quite sure, in context, that he is the author--says about it:
Bulwer a Plagiarist.--This, we are sorry to say, is no fiction--for in writing his fiction of the Last Days of Pompeii, Bulwer--the proud, the [?]-enough-to-be-admired, Bulwer--has stolen largely and shamefully from the work of a poor American--from the Last Night of Pompeii, a poem by Sumner Lincoln Fairfield. The case was that when the last mentioned work was published, two or three years since, the author sent a copy to Bulwer, which the proud Englishman never acknowledged, but taking the hint for his novel, sat down and wrote that popular work, borrowing freely from the ideas of Mr. Fairfield, without so much as saying, By your leave, sir, or even mentioning the name of Mr. Fairfield or of his book. In several instances the design, the action, and the language as near as prose will answer to poetry, is the same in the novel as in the poem; the names of persons only are changed.
Now, this is especially pertinent for several reasons. Mathew was known to be naive. He is sort of extra-naive, and extra-wary at the same time, by way of compensation, and so he vacillates from one position to the other. Secondly, in 1832, Mathew had written a book review discussing the issue of whether Bulwer was a sensationalist, as charged, or an idealist who wrote from social conscience. Thirdly, in 1838, a chapter from one of Bulwer's novels, on a spiritualist theme, appeared in Mathew's own self-published paper, the Salisbury "Monitor." Whether he approved of Bulwer at that point, or was simply acquiescing to his wife's request, is unknown.
I have speculated, based on a great deal of evidence and my own vague past-life memory impressions in the matter (expressed publicly in this blog, many years before I began investigating it), that Charles Dickens stole "A Christmas Carol" from Mathew and Abby--the original authors--in a very similar manner. So here, we have Mathew accusing Bulwer of very much the same kind of plagiarism that he would later experience at the hands of Dickens.
That's all. I don't need to develop this further. It was one more piece of the puzzle. If nothing else, it tells us that such things did happen--perhaps more frequently than anyone realizes. Perhaps they still happen, today. Many hit songs didn't originate with the person who made them famous. Sometimes, the original writer is credited--but sometimes he or she isn't.
Now if the original writer tries to set the record straight, he or she finds it an uphill battle. Possession is nine tenths of the law, and it appears to be almost 100% of famous works.
As regards these cases that Mr. Clark was presenting...I'm going back to that. My documentary featured a man (Jeff Keene, in his first appearance) being interviewed in front of his own past-life grave. Nobody else has done that. My own case features a message from my past-life self, sent to myself in this life, and duly-received. I've presented that in an earlier Update. Nobody has that. Both of these things, I believe, are probably world firsts. I have these two significant world firsts, and yet none of my ostensible colleagues ever seek me out. Isn't that odd?
I think it's odd. What was the message? As Mathew Franklin Whittier, I was telling myself, his future incarnation, that he had been the real author of the travelogue signed as "Quails," written for the Boston "Weekly Museum" of 1849-52. He sent this message when he picked up the travelogue again, under a different name and persona, for a different paper, some years later. He made it clear that it was the same writer; and then he made an out-of-context reference to the "Lethean stream" in the introduction, which, given the way he used code, could mean only one thing: "If no-one in my lifetime ever figures this out, I want my future incarnation to know that I, writing here as 'J.O.B.,' wrote as 'Quails' several years ago, despite the fact that it was officially attributed to someone else."
Message received. I was way ahead of him. After all, I am him, and he might expect no less. But getting that message from myself, projected forward in time, was extremely interesting. I know of no other instance of this in all of the paranormal literature.
Speaking to my colleagues, now, y'all call me sometime, and I'll tell you about it.
Stephen Sakellarios, M.S.
*From memory, I believe that in the book she says or infers that I unwisely led her down a mountainside; whereas, actually, she insisted and I was desperately trying to look after her, since it was clear I wasn't going to be able to dissuade her. When she decided to go look at a natural feature in the woods as possible evidence, her subject and I made the split-second decision that she would stay with Dr. Rieder's boyfriend (both of them were in their 70's), while I would tag along with Dr. Rieder, as we obviously couldn't let her sally forth on her own. After awhile she made the decision to continue walking down the mountainside, as she didn't want to try to hike back up, and I had no choice but to follow. Her stubbornness is actually a wonderful quality when it comes to being a pioneer in a marginalized field; it simply wasn't serving her at age 75 in this circumstance.
Music opening this page: "Won't Get Fooled Again," by The Who, from the album, "Who's Next"