News Briefs 31-10-2005

Yarr, Halloween be the one day of the year I don’t have to be wearin’ a costume.

  • Tis Samhain, when the gates between worlds are wide open, magic is at its most potent, and the dead walk the land of the living.
  • Witchvox has two excellent articles on Halloween and Samhain.
  • Diwali, the Hindu Festival of Lights, is celebrated this week, from India to Bali.
  • In Nepal it is known as Tihar.
  • During Diwali, it’s considered lucky to share sweets (traditional recipes included). Yum.
  • What are the legends and mythologies behind Diwali?
  • This week also brings us El Dia de los Muertos, Mexico’s Day of the Dead. With origins in Aztec culture, it’s a brief time when the deceased can be remembered and celebrated.
  • Author and photographer Mary J Andrade has a wonderful website exploring the history and culture of El Dia de los Muertos, helping to keep the tradition alive. Pun intended.
  • A bronze ritual cauldron almost 3000-years-old was found in Bulgaria. Mummified newts and bats were found nearby.
  • A dig in Thebes uncovers traces of a cult to Hercules. It’s probably the remains of Hercules’ home.
  • The Pyramids of Egypt have been demoted to the Eighth Wonder of the World. Zahi Hawass was promoted to Seventh.
  • Has a pyramid been found in Bosnia? Here’s a Bosnian magazine spread about the pyramid and its discoverer. More pictures, with core drillings, can be found here. Looks strikingly similar to the pyramid-mounds of Xian, China. Unrestored Mayan pyramids, covered in dirt and foliage, also look similar.
  • Crop Circles aren’t a new phenomenon, and evidence can be found in our distant past. Even Sweden pre-1926 has a history of crop circles!
  • A victim of alien abduction rejects the notion that all such experiences are the result of hallucinations during sleep paralysis.
  • Professor Chris French, head of the Anomalistic Psychology Research Unit at Goldsmiths College in London, says that alien abductions are all a product of the mind’s imagination. Ironically, such researchers seem to have a tendency to fantasise their opinions.
  • This author doesn’t underestimate the power of magical thinking. Not In Kansas Anymore: A Curious Tale of How Magic Is Transforming America by Christine Wicker (Amazon US or UK).
  • An opinion piece in the American Chronicle calls for the expansion of remote viewing training for US military and intelligence services. “Expand”? Don’t they need to restart the programs first? Oh, they never ended …
  • Are Thai lanterns responsible for UFO sightings in Exeter, UK?
  • A Las Vegas man worries about seeing UFOs all the time.
  • Ever wondered why I’m so interested in Japan? The UFO Party running for government is why. Here’s a repost of an article discussing Japanese Shintoism and technology, Ghosts In The Machine.
  • Was an eerie light spotted on Highway 126 a UFO or the spirit of a recently deceased man?
  • A very rare occurence of a poltergeist, an entity created by a Tucson grandmother.
  • Skeptics converge to take on religion and morality. With Skeptics gone for the night, the paranormal runs amock, only to disappear again when the Skeptics return from their backslapping.
  • An Ottawa priest says even dabbling in the Tarot can cause demonic trouble.
  • A new documentary from India explores a secretive Hindu sect who believe eating the dead will bring immortality and supernatural powers.
  • Vampirism in New England. Food for the Dead: On the Trail of New England’s Vampires by Michael E Bell (Amazon US or UK).
  • Inspecting fire extinguishers and alarms by day, paranormal investigator by night. I wonder if his movie production company deals with special effects.
  • The Knights of St Edmund say there’s a curse, but others scoff at the idea.
  • Psychic sleuths assess haunted possessions for a two-part television special.
  • Searching for answers about life after death. Spook: Science Tackles the Afterlife by Mary Roach (Amazon US or UK).
  • Myths and Mysteries of Scotland: North Berwick and the brew of tortured witches, and a harvest of Halloween traditions.
  • Cats could be allergic to people. I’m allergic to both.
  • Is this paw print found in cow manure evidence of big cats in the UK, or a load of …?
  • If hoof-shaped prints were found, would this be evidence that Satyrs exist? Satire exists on TDG.
  • Cryptovegetableology: Unfamiliar mushrooms have been found growing on a Shropshire farm. In other vegetable news, a purple carrot startles a New Foundland gardener.
  • In breaking news, a race of ancient skeleton people have been unearthed in Egypt. Zahi Hawass states that this is proof, together with mummies and animal-headed people, that Halloween originated in Egypt.

Thanks Kat.

Quote of the Day:

Men say that in this midnight hour,
The disembodièd have power
To wander as it liketh them,
By wizard oak and fairy stream.

William Motherwell, Scottish Poet (1797-1835)

  1. Skeletal people
    When people read this article, despite it being from “The Onion” and about animated skeletal warriers, the red flag that should go off signaling that this must be bogus is that it mentions Egypt but not Zahi Hawass.

  2. Remote Control

    The article on remote viewing displays a naive perception on the use of remote viewing. Suggesting the army / intelligence services train more men, not cancel the ‘hot potato’ shows the author hasn’t thought this through.
    Sure these skills come in handy spying/ doing reconnaisance BUT ..indeed until ‘ us’ found a way to keep our many dirty little secrets under wraps there’s no way we want to encourage or stimulate growth in the number of people that can use these skills.
    What if the newspapers have their journalists trained in remote viewing, the white house would be full of them – not to mention the pentagon and micheal jacksons bedroom.
    Nah remote viewing is a scam…(not !). B.t.w travelling these realms is not without dangers, they love egoless men in uniform too…

    ” do unto others as you would have them do unto you “

  3. Tarot Trouble
    I wonder what the Tarot would have to say about dabbling with the priesthood … hmmmm —————————–Truth is stranger than fiction.

  4. Paw print with a strange smell…………
    I checked out the paw print in tne poop, and I have to say that I think it stinks!!

    Either this ‘cat’ has a very delicate tread, or, some loon has carefully manufactured this alleged evidence with his (wouldn’t be a woman, would it?) own fair hands.

    Yes, it is a beautiful print, but shows absolutely no evidence of this creature actually weighing anything. There is no compression around the footprint, and it just looks like it has been created by the insertion of an object, or objects, into the, ….erm, poo.

    Nice try guys, but if that’s the best that you can do, then you are definitely not the cat’s whiskers.

  5. Goodness gracious me..’ve outdone yourself Rick.What an effort.
    I love the UFO stuff and I specially liked the skeleton people.
    They’re a bit scary though.

    Here’s a tip.Don’t back Makybe Diva in the Cup.She’s carrying too heavy a weight.Its a crime.


    1. I will continue with my racing tips..
      ..altho I realise I crashed and burned with this one.
      I still think the Diva was carrying too much weight, that’s handicapping for you.

      But it proves that women are stupendous.!
      Three races, three cups!.


    I’m the author of NOT IN KANSAS ANYMORE: The Curious Tale of How Magic is Transforming America. Thank you for including my editorial on magic in America. It ran in the Dallas Morning News and went out over the Knight-Ridder wire. But only one newspaper picked it up. After more than 80 radio and TV interviews, I’ve realized that some people understand what’s going on and others never will. So I’m especially happy to be in the company of people who are interested magical, mystical, spiritual experiences. Such experiences are a lot more common than I would have ever imagined.

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