Is there room in the Para/Crypto/Fortean world for a gun-toting, paranoid, bipolar, opinionated bastard? A lonely romantic in search of his lost soul? A knight, Samurai, gunslinger, born in the wrong century? A self-destructive, doom-driven survivor seeking redemption? A heavy drinking gonzo outlaw cryptozoologist whose ego is exceeded only by his libido?
No, there isn't. That's why I'm here...

09 December 2009

"The Origins of Psychic Phenomena", Stan Gooch

To rip off the cartoon character Pogo: "We has met the monsters and they is us."
In contrast to "Demoniality", this book, written by a psychologist, takes a fascinating position regarding well-known psychic phenomena. The author has not only witnessed, but experienced such phenomena as Incubi/Succubi, poltergeist activity, and "presences".
Far from being a debunking scientist, the author doesn't question the fact that such things exist, rather he seeks to explain them as manifestations of the unconscious mind. This isn't saying the phenomena themselves are subconscious, on the contrary, there is abundant evidence demonstrating that such events manifest as part of objective reality, in front of credible witnesses, and occasionally under controlled conditions.
There are chapters devoted to Incubi/Succubi, Demons, poltergeists, paranormal fire (including spontaneous human combustion), automatic writing, "past" lives, stigmata, mediumship, and a few other paranormal topics.
Gooch uses some well-known cases to illustrate his point and support his theory. (including the famous "Entity" case).
Gooch makes a strong case for the unexplored potential power of the unconscious, explores the development and evolution of the mammal/human brain, and stresses the need for mainstream science to take a serious look at psychic phenomena from a psychiatric and psychological perspective.


Autumnforest said...

Okay, somebody's been doing some cool reading! I have a theory along the lines that the same mechanism that causes residual hauntings can occur under moments of great stress and emotion, just like poltergeist activity, just like telekinesis, et cetera. I think we'll eventually understand it better--do humans secrete hormones that stain the environment? Do we send out some kind of waves that play into the hard materials of a building and objects like some kind of harmonic attenuation? What the heck is it? We don't know yet, but I think it's entirely possible we'll find that the right people in the right places can actually set these things off which might explain why poor Kris on Ghost Hunters can't get any action, but Jason and Grant do. I'd hazard to guess that J&G have some really tough emotional stuff from their pasts that make them better conduits than happy easy going Kris.

Autumnforest said...

Burt, I saw this and thought of you immediately

Gummerfan said...

Looks like a fun way to spend a weekend. Mad Max and The Road Warrior top my list of post-apocalypse movies. I notice little details in them that many people miss.
But I can't help but question the practicality of leather pants in a desert environment! The heat, the sand, the poor air circulation...Guess that's where the word "chaps" come from!