Wednesday, August 31
Occasionally I like to think about things that many will consider as too unbelievable to be true. Some of these inevitably turn out to be absolute codswallop but, if we never think about the unbelievable, we might miss out on something that is important. Once upon a time we would have considered going to the moon, the Internet and so on to be fantasy and impossible.
I was flicking through the pages of a book Same Soul, Many Bodies where the author, Dr Brian Weiss, talks about a patient he hypnotised to reveal a former life.
Patrick, as he was called, didn't come up with something standard. One of his previous lives was 60,000 years ago and, what's more, he was born on another planet.
Okay, so what was he doing on earth therefore? It appears that a section of his race migrated to Earth as their own planet was dying. When they arrived they were met by other migrants from other star systems.
These visitors mixed 'among the evolving sub-species, human beings'.
But there's more to it than just this. The migrants also went on to reincarnate on Earth which helped the evolution of the new human people.
Let's carry on with this 'unbelievable' scenario. Patrick indicated that the physical bodies of these immigrants were very similar to a human form but their minds were far, far superior.
One of Patrick's jobs was to 'supervise the storage of artifacts and written knowledge'. This information would be hidden until the human race caught up a little and was ready for the contents to be revealed.
One of the other things, mentioned by Patrick under hypnosis, was that, "the distinction between God and humans is minor." One small part of the hidden knowledge is "how to master the art of separating consciousness from the physical vehicle."
We hear of similar things to this today but one of the points of this ancient knowledge is that this allows the person to 'assume other, less solid bodies as it wishes.' Could this be the basis perhaps for the likes of angels who, when seen, appear to be something divine, almost god like? In reality they are simply an advanced form of ourselves.
Patrick went on to reveal other lives as a renowned mathematician in Central America, a Jewish Rabbi and a Buddhist monk.
All in all an unbelievable story but could parts in fact be true? Could people from other star systems have migrated to Earth? It would solve a lot of missing links. But there again, if Patrick was so advanced 60,000 years ago, how come he needs to go to a doctor for help and works as an accountant for a dot-com company?
That's the difficulty of thinking about the so called unbelievable we seem to be programmed to disbelieve.
Scientists Discover Arsenic Eating Life Form
Ezekiel: Alien Abduction Of The Bible
Knowledge Learned From Fish Like Aliens
Tuesday, August 30
The following is a true coincidence story taken from 'WW2 People's War' about Jerry Clements of Middlesbrough as told by Joan Bilton in 1974.
The month was November, and the year 1945. The war in Europe over, and Hiroshima still fresh in the memory. All over the world service men and women were picking up the pieces and dreaming of demob.
North Africa was teeming with prisoners of war and refugees. Algiers was busting at the seams, and among the allied forces in the town was a recently arrived contingent of WAAF’s (Womens Auxiliary Air Force). They were there to assist in the running of No 2 General Hospital, some miles from the town.
On this night a party of these girls - and I was one of them - waited by the hospital gates for transport to take them to a dance at the Sgts. Mess, RAF Blida. The transport was late, and some of them drifted back to their billets. Eventually the truck arrived and in a short time set off for Blida.
As the truck travelled along the 19 year old driver prepared to go over a level crossing. All appeared to be normal, barriers raised and green lights showed. As he drove onto the crossing he was horrified to see an engine speeding down the line and almost on top of them.
In desperation, he wrenched the wheel over to the right and hit the gate post.
The young driver, unhurt but badly shaken, went to get help. He was later to get an official commendation for his skill and prompt action in a serious emergency. Regaining consciousness days later I found I had been the most seriously injured WAAF, having a fractured skull.
Years passed, and I have lived in many parts of the country. My husband got a job with British Steel Corporation and we moved to Middlesbrough. On recommendation of colleagues at work, he decides to take his car to a motor engineer in the town centre.
As it was a Saturday, I went along with him to leave the car and do some shopping. As the repair proved to be easily remedied, we waited for the engineer to complete the job.
As the three of us chatted, a chance remark channelled the conversation into reminiscences of the war.
The engineer, Jerry Clements, had been in the RAF and served in Algiers. A look of amazement spread over his face as I described the ill-fated trip to that dance 29 years before. When the story was told, he spoke quietly.
"I was the driver of that lorry"!
WW2 People's War is an online archive of wartime memories contributed by members of the public and gathered by the BBC.
Further WW2 Posts
Hitler And His Divining Rod For Dark Forces
The Lusitania And The Manipulation Of Wars For Profit
World War 2 Coincidences With Happy Endings
Monday, August 29
Buddhist Koans also interest to me. You probably know the sort of thing: "What is the sound of one hand clapping?" They are questions than cannot be answered by normal rational thinking.
The following sayings aren't, however, koans but are attributed to Taisen Deshimaru (1914 – April 30, 1982) who was a Japanese Sōtō Zen Buddhist teacher. See what you think of them. I've classed them as his 'Top Ten Sayings'
1) To receive everything, one must open one's hands and give.
2) You must concentrate upon and consecrate yourself wholly to each day, as though a fire were raging in your hair.
3) If you have a glass full of liquid you can discourse forever on its qualities, discuss whether it is cold, warm, whether it is really and truly composed of H-2-O, or even mineral water, or saki. Meditation is Drinking it!
4) You are the strongest and the others keep their distance. It is no longer necessary to win victories over them.
5) If you are not happy here and now, you never will be.
6) Harmonizing opposites by going back to their source is the distinctive quality of the Zen attitude, the Middle Way: embracing contradictions, making a synthesis of them, achieving balance.
7) We feel our shell keeps us safe, but it crushes us and others, and keeps out light and sun.
8) We feel our shell keeps us safe, but it crushes us and others, and keeps out light and sun.
9) Train the body and develop stamina and endurance. But the spirit of competition and power that presides over them is not good, it reflects a distorted vision of life. The root of the martial arts is not there.
10) You have to practice until you die.
... and a bonus one for good luck ...
Think with your whole body.
Sunday, August 28
Some of my memories of her go way back to when we were very young. I remember being eight years old and my mother took Tisha and I to London Zoo. I can still picture the day in my mind.
The animals impressed us so much that we took it in turns to hide behind a metal seat - that looked a bit like a cage - and fed each other through the 'bars'. I also remember feeling that animals shouldn't really be locked up with very little space to roam. I knew I wouldn't have liked it if I was an animal.
Before I received the phone call my wife and I had been for a walk and we saw lots of white feathers, but also three big black feathers - which I consider can sometimes mean something 'unlucky'. So, perhaps the feathers where in relation to Tisha's death.
And then to take me back to my early days a second time I had a comment left on my blog post Teenage Memories Unlocked By A Coincidence. The post was about a girl, Stephanie, I knew while I was at Senior School and how she had died.
Marian wrote: "Thank you for your moving story, Mike. I remember you at Mellow Lane School. Stephanie was my friend and so I was also shocked and sad to learn of her passing ...." and carried on with quite a long comment.
So that was two reminders of my formative years and quite sad ones at that.
On the post about Stephanie I ended it by saying, "Some coincidences, I feel, come about to make us reflect on life." And that's certainly what I seem to be doing today.
Saturday, August 27
A simple coincidence today, or maybe it was intuition or even psychometry
My wife and I went out for a morning walk and about half way down our road I saw a silver nut in the gutter. By nut I mean the sort that screws on to a bolt and not the one that is eaten.
I picked it up and immediately felt I should hang on to it for some reason, so I put it into my pocket for safe keeping.
A while later, while crossing a small, old bridge (sign above) and spotting some fish, we were talking to six year old Imogen who was riding on her scooter.
She went to tighten something on the scooter and told us how she had to be careful as her dad said there was a nut missing.
"Like this one?" I asked.
"That's it!" she said, "Why have you got it?"
I explained how I had found it and thought I had better keep it. And with that I replaced the nut where it had come from on her scooter - right next to the words 'tighten regularly'. She sped away happy that her 'vehicle' was fixed.
And that's it. Maybe not too impressive for my 600th post but I'm in the process of changing my computer and also my Internet Service Provider. Hopefully everything will be working well tomorrow!
Friday, August 26
The painter and poet Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1828-1882) married his muse and model Elizabeth 'Lizzie' Siddal in 1860 after a long engagement.
Lizzie was sickly and their marriage was turbulent with him often going off with other women. Their only child was still-born and his wife died after only two years of marriage. The cause of her death was an overdose of laudanum taken for her depression and nervousness. Some say this was an act of suicide though the official verdict was an accidental overdose.
Rossetti was devastated by her death and destroyed early photographs of her as he considered that they didn't do her beauty justice. As a gesture to his sadness he enclosed the only manuscript of his poems in Lizzie's coffin to be buried with her in London's Highgate Cemetery. This a symbolic action as he considered poetry to be a purer form of expression than painting.
Rossetti had been interested in the supernatural, as it is often called, since a very you man. He dabbled in spiritualism and mesmerism and believed in symbolism and an afterlife.
While out and about walking in 1869 he came across a very tame chaffinch and was instantly convinced that this was the spirit of his dead wife. He saw this as a defining symbol and decided to open Lizzie's grave to exhume his poems.
Rossetti didn't attend the digging up of Lizzie, but a friend present told him how her golden-red hair was longer than it had been in life and how she was still as beautiful as when she died.
The word soon travelled fast about Rossetti's 'underground' poems and the public rushed to buy them following publication. The legend of Elizabeth Siddal's beauty was born and how, even in death, this could not be diminished.
Rossetti painted Beata Beatrix (picture at top of this post) after his wife's death. Though about Dante and Beatrix, it is really essentially about Lizzie and is full of symbolism. The sundial is pointing to nine - the time she died - the red dove is a symbol of death, with the white poppy being the sleep of death brought about by laudanum. It was his way of coming to terms with his loss.
Below is a copy of a poem in Rossetti's own handwriting - with the words of Autumn Song below this.
Know’st thou not at the fall of the leaf
How the heart feels a languid grief
Laid on it for a covering,
And how sleep seems a goodly thing
In Autumn at the fall of the leaf?
And how the swift beat of the brain
Falters because it is in vain,
In Autumn at the fall of the leaf
Knowest thou not? and how the chief
Of joys seems—not to suffer pain?
Know’st thou not at the fall of the leaf
How the soul feels like a dried sheaf
Bound up at length for harvesting,
And how death seems a comely thing
In Autumn at the fall of the leaf?
The Mystery Of Jesus Visiting Cornwall In England
Eve Shows Herself At Eden
Trample On The Past And Selves Slain
Thursday, August 25
Malcolm was born in 1947 in Nottingham, England. His mother was to have her baby - him - in Highbury Hospital. She was admitted but then asked to move out as another woman, who had planned a home birth, was having difficulties and needed her bed.
Malcolm's mother was put in an ambulance to be taken to another hospital about twenty miles away. It seems, however, that Malcolm couldn't wait to see the world and he was born in a lay by on the A614.
Now fast forward to 1975. In Malcolm's own words this is what happened:
"My wife and I were arranging life assurance, and the salesman asked for my date of birth, and laughed, as it was the same day as his.
'Where were you born?' I asked and his reply was that he was meant to be born at home, but as there were problems, his mother was rushed into Highbury Hospital ..."
Yes, it was the insurance man that brought about the circumstances which led to Malcolm being born in a lay by on the A614. Life is definitely sometimes stranger than fiction.
So this is the third recent post where coincidences have come about after many years in between. These are the other two:
Bernice Finally Met The Twin She Dreamed About
She Found Her Painting After Forty Years
Wednesday, August 24
My parents always had the Coaching Inn bowl, as shown above, on their sideboard going back to my earliest memories. It dates to about 1900 and my wife and I still have this on display.
One side of the bowl, or maybe it's a vase, has a picture of The Anchor at Liphook. As I, for a change, had a little spare time I thought I'd see if The Anchor Inn still exists. It does, but looks a bit different today.
What I did find out, with the help of Google, was that Liphook in the 16th century was on an important coaching route from the English south coast and port of Portsmouth to London. The coach and horses would stop at The Anchor to rest and often stay overnight. The mail was also carried on this route.
Lots of well known 'olde worlde' English people stayed at The Anchor from Kings to soldiers.
The present Coaching Inn pre-dates 1588, when it is recorded as having a fire. There was an inn on the site as far back as the 1300s and King Edward II is said to have stopped overnight in 1320.
Others who have frequented the establishment include Lord Nelson on his way to fight the Battle of Trafalgar. Trafalgar Square in London being his memorial, with his statue on Nelson's Column.
King Edward IV, the Duke of Wellington, Queen Victoria, Lady Hamilton are all believed to have snuggled up in the bedrooms - though not together, of course.
On the 6th of August 1668 Samuel Pepys wrote in his diary:
"So to coach again, and got to Lippock, 2 late over Hindhead, having an old man, a guide, in the coach with us; but got thither with great fear of being out of our way, it being ten at night. Here good, honest people; and after supper, to bed.
Pepys spelt Liphook as Lippock and it's interesting that he used '2' as a substitute for 'too' - and we thought this was something new to the likes of Twitter and texts.
Actually this post is way off subject because I found no synchronicity or coincidences with the Anchor Inn, only disappointment of how this looks today - as in the dreary photo below. Where has the romance of Kings, Mistresses and Highway Men all gone? Oh well, such is life. The photo shows the centre of Liphook with the Royal Anchor Inn in the back ground zzzzz! (Photo: copyright Martyn Pattison)
Ah, but later by chance I did find that The Anchor does have a ghost: Highwayman Jaques.
Jaques was a robber and was shot by lawmen in room six of The Anchor but his spirit remains. He can also be heard travelling along the roads on his horse in the village.
And, also in Liphook, they have their very own fairy who plays enchanting music. He or she hides in trees, bushes and along the quiet lanes. And, another and: the area is haunted by the ghost of a pale white calf! So that's a bit more like it!
... and this is how The Anchor, or Royal Anchor as it is now called, used to look in this painting ... how times have changed.
St Paul's Cathedral Coincidence Cluster
Was This A Message Via An Antique Dog?
Her Husband Chimed The Clock From Beyond The Grave
Tuesday, August 23
Christine Quinn was one of the passengers on the train who survived and was attending a memorial service.
She remembers how, twenty-five years ago, she was on the train with her one year old child. Christine told The Press what happened a quarter of a century ago:
"I threw myself over the pram to shield my son from flying glass. For this reason, I didn’t want to take him out of the pram, and a kind gentleman helped me to carry the pram up the Embankment.
We were all shaking and crying and didn’t know what to do or where to go but then buses turned up to take us on our journey.
I still get emotional when I talk about it. My son is grown up now and is a Lance Corporal in the Household Cavalry, based in Windsor. I’m so proud of him – it could have been so easy to have lost him on that horrific day."
After all these years she is still keeps in touch with a girl, Amanda, whom she met on the train.
But there is a strange coincidence to this story. One of the named passengers who died on the train, and whose name is on a memorial stone in Yorkshire, is Christine Quinn.
One Christine Quinn died while the other lived.
Monday, August 22
Her mother died just prior to Jo starting to write the first Harry Potter book, so she never knew of the phenomenon that was to follow.
Jo discovered that her maternal grandfather was of French origin and became almost obsessed with discovering more about her great-grandfather Louis Volant, with whom she felt a definite bond. After a lot of effort his details were uncovered and his grave found, though this was disappointing as he was buried in a communal plot.
She discovered, however, a surprising coincidence in a room in the Paris records office - which looked to be the double of Hogwart's library. Her great-grandfather was born on the same day as Harry Potter: the 31st of July.
JK Rowling was also born on the 31st of July - thus the reason for Harry's birth date. She in 1965 and Harry in 1980.
Other Celebrity Posts:
Alex Kingston And Her Ghostly Encounter
A Feeling Which Led To A Meeting With Bono
Spike Milligan: I Told You I Was Ill Coincidence
Sunday, August 21
In Favour Of God
I believe in God, only I spell it "Nature".
> Frank Lloyd Wright
God is the great mysterious motivator of what we call nature and it has been said often by philosophers, that nature is the will of God. And, I prefer to say that nature is the only body of God that we shall ever see. If we wish to know the truth concerning anything, we'll find it in the nature of that thing.
> Frank Lloyd Wright in Truth Against the World
When we say God is a spirit, we know what we mean, as well as we do when we say that the pyramids of Egypt are matter. Let us be content, therefore, to believe him to be a spirit, that is, an essence that we know nothing of, in which originally and necessarily reside all energy, all power, all capacity, all activity, all wisdom, all goodness.
> John Adams in a letter to Thomas Jefferson
God is not a limited individual who sits alone up in the clouds on a golden throne. God is pure Consciousness that dwells within everything. Understanding this truth, learn to accept and love everyone equally.
God, the supreme being, is neither circumscribed by space, nor touched by time; he cannot be found in a particular direction, and his essence cannot change. The secret conversation is thus entirely spiritual; it is a direct encounter between God and the soul, abstracted from all material constraints.
> Avicenna as quoted in 366 Readings From Islam
God alone is real, nothing matters but love for God.
> Meher Baba
When with bold telescopes I survey the old and newly discovered stars and planets, when with excellent microscopes I discern the unimitable subtility of nature's curious workmanship; and when, in a word, by the help of anatomical knives, and the light of chemical furnaces, I study the book of nature, I find myself oftentimes reduced to exclaim with the Psalmist, 'How manifold are Thy works, O Lord! In wisdom hast Thou made them all!
> Sir Robert Boyle
An outlook through this peephole [that manned space flight had opened] at the vast mysteries of the universe should only confirm our belief in the certainty of its Creator. I find it as difficult to understand a scientist who does not acknowledge the presence of a superior rationality behind the existence of the universe as it is to comprehend a theologian who would deny the advances of science.
> Wernher Von Braun
To say that I am made in the image of God is to say that Love is the reason for my existence, for God is love. Love is my true identity. Selflessness is my true self. Love is my true character. Love is my name.
> Thomas Merton in Seeds of Contemplation
I believe in a spiritual world — not as anything separate from this world — but as its innermost truth. With the breath we draw we must always feel this truth, that we are living in God.
> Rabindranath Tagore
The Opposition To God
Not only is there no God, but try getting a plumber on weekends.
> Woody Allen in Getting Even
God was a clever idea ... The human race came up with a winner there.
> J. G. Ballard as quoted in 'The benign catastrophist'
To the lexicographer, God is simply the word that comes next to go-cart
> Samuel Butler
Religion easily has the greatest bullshit story ever told. Think about it. Religion has actually convinced people that there's an invisible man living in the sky who watches everything you do, every minute of every day. And the invisible man has a special list of ten things he does not want you to do. And if you do any of these ten things, he has a special place, full of fire and smoke and burning and torture and anguish, where he will send you to live and suffer and burn and choke and scream and cry forever and ever 'til the end of time! But He loves you. He loves you. He loves you and he needs money! He always needs money! He's all-powerful, all-perfect, all-knowing and all-wise, but somehow, just can't handle money!
> George Carlin
I don't believe in God because I don't believe in Mother Goose.
> Clarence Darrow
The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.
> Richard Dawkins in The God Delusion
God says do what you wish, but make the wrong choice and you will be tortured for eternity in hell. That, sir, is not free will. It would be akin to a man telling his girlfriend, 'Do what you wish, but if you choose to leave me, I will track you down and blow your brains out.' When a man says this we call him a psychopath and cry out for his imprisonment/execution. When a god says the same, we call him loving and build churches in his honor.
> Chuck Easttom computer programmer
I see only with deep regret that God punishes so many of His children for their numerous stupidities, for which only He Himself can be held responsible; in my opinion, only His nonexistence could excuse Him.
> Einstein in Letter to Edgar Meyer
God is dead. Marx is dead. And I don’t feel so well myself.
> Eugène Ionesco as quoted in Jewish American Literature
God is cruel, sometimes he makes you live.
> Stephen King in Desperation
Similar Recent Posts:
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20 Zen Sayings And Proverbs To Ponder
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Saturday, August 20
"I often read your blog and your article about the twins meeting after about 50 years made me decide to send you one of my coincidence experiences.
Between 1968 and 1969 I lived in Poole in Dorset and painted as a hobby while my children were small. In Poole Park they sometimes had exhibitions of local artists and I entered two of my pictures of flowers, which I was willing to sell.
I was thrilled to find out that one of my paintings sold for £6, which was a decent amount in those distant days. Following this I often entered my pictures into Poole Park exhibitions but sold very few. This didn't surprise me as I'm not that good a painter, it was only a hobby.
Last year I went to the Lake District, several hundreds of miles away, on holiday and we stayed at small Bed and Breakfast places which we booked as we travelled.
On the third or fourth night my husband and I found a suitable B&B and booked in. The proprietor showed us to our room and above the bed was a painting. I joked that it looked like one of mine. The man didn't make much of what I said and left us on our own.
"I'm sure that's my painting," I insisted to my husband.
"Can't be," he said.
I couldn't let it rest and stood on the bed to take a better look. My husband thought I'd gone mad or something! The painting was only held up by a picture hook and I managed to take the picture down.
There on the back was my name and old address in Poole!
We told the proprietor about the painting and he said it was amongst his mother's possessions when she died and he thought it suitable for one of his letting bedrooms. He didn't know how his mother had got the painting as she never lived in Poole.
We had booked into that Guest House purely by chance and were then given the right room to view my painting again after over forty years. It's a small world."
Bernice Finally Met The 'Twin' She Dreamed About
Friday, August 19
Many mock the idea of planting or picking plants at a precise time or when the moon is in a certain phase. But maybe there is an element of truth within, what some would consider to be, an 'old wives tale'.
Over 2000 years ago mistletoe was described as a cure for cancer. I'm not for one minute saying it is, though Joan van Holsteijn claims the herb cured her cancer. Also note that large intakes of mistletoe can be dangerous.
A cancer research institute in Switzerland, however, did some interesting experiments with mistletoe. They looked at the old cure recipes and saw that the plant had to be picked at a specific time, otherwise the effectiveness would be considerably diminished.
The research institute did 70,00 experiments on parts of the plant picked at hourly intervals during the day and night.
They analysed the constituents, the degree of acidity and also tested the effect of preparations on white mice (I don't agree with animal testing personally). What they discovered was that the properties of the plant were affected by the time of day, the weather and also the phases of the moon. In other words it did matter when the plant was harvested.
Normally, when a so called alternative medicine is effective, it is dismissed as psychosomatic or the placebo effect. But by doing this we limit the possibilities of what might just be true. The planets affect our lives and those of the plants: the right herb or plant, picked at the right time may just be worthy of serious investigation.
References: Moon and Plant: Capillary Dynamic Studies and Supernature by Lyall Watson
The Secret Teachings Of Karma And Sickness
The Mysterious Crete Goddess Myrtos
The Globes In The Sky
Thursday, August 18
Nothing too dramatic today but an illustration of how subjects, coincidences if you like, come about in clusters. I received an email regarding a post I wrote about St Paul's Cathedral during World War II.
From then on St.Paul's seemed to be everywhere I looked - perhaps a slight exaggeration but I became aware of lots of other stuff about the London Cathedral in books, papers and on television.
For example, as I have written previously, I like old books and sometimes buy them at flea markets, car boot sales and so on. I opened up one of the books and on the page was an engraving of St.Paul's from the 1880s - picture at the top of this post.
Later that day I opened another book, from the 1980s, and there was the photo below. A virtual duplicate picture but from a completely different era. Note how even the clock on the right has been cut in half.
The newspaper I often read had an article which mentioned the Whispering Gallery at St Paul's:
"Climb 259 steps up the dome and you will find The Whispering Gallery, which runs around the interior of the Dome. It gets its name from a charming quirk in its construction, which makes a whisper against its walls audible on the opposite side."
This reminded me of when a small child I visited St.Paul's Cathedral with my mother. We went up those steps and did the whispering thing: she on one side and me far away on the other. Amazingly to me, a small child, we heard each others whispers.
And so St Paul's Cathedral was brought to my attention time and time again. But why? This is something I haven't figured out as yet. Maybe it was simply a reminder of days out with my mother.
St.Paul's Cathedral Protected by A Hidden Power In WW2
Wednesday, August 17
While in the employ of the 5th Earl of Carnarvon, Howard Carter was excavating in the Egyptian Valley of the Kings. On the 4th of November, 1922 he came across a flight of stairs leading down to a blocked door covered in ancient seals.
On entering the tomb, on the 26th of November, the body of the boy king Tutankhamun was discovered along with a magnificent quantity of funerary goods.
entering the tomb of Tutankhamun
But, as the door of the tomb was broken open, the Curse of the Pharaohs was also released ... well, that's what the likes of Sir Alfred Conan Doyle believed at the time.
The first sign of the curse being let loose was when Howard Carter sent a messenger to his house. On approaching the house a small cry was heard and the messenger found a bird cage occupied by a live cobra. Symbolically the cobra was a sign of the Egyptian monarchy.
Carter's canary was dead in the cobra's mouth. This incident was reported in the New York Times in December 1922. Carter's house had been broken into: by the Royal Cobra as worn on the King's head - see photo above showing the cobra on the brow of Tutankhamun's gold mummy mask.
Within seven weeks of the tomb being opened, on the 5th of April 1923, the Earl of Carnarvon died from injuring a mosquito bite. Meanwhile at Highclere Castle in England Susie, his trusty dog, howled and died at exactly the same time.
The media quickly embraced the idea of the Curse of the Pharaohs. Conan Doyle, an occultist as well as the Sherlock Holmes author, spread the word. The novelist Mari Corelli warned that there would be dire consequences for anyone entering the previously sealed tomb.
People appeared to be falling like flies. Carnarvon's brother Aubrey Herbert died on his way to X-ray the royal mummy; Carter's right hand man, Arthur Mace, died; the American railroad magnate George Jay Gould, who had visited the tomb, died; the French Egyptologist, Georges Benedite, died of a fall after visiting the tomb ... the list went on an on.
But was everything as it seemed?
Translations of various hieroglyphs were published in the media such as: 'They who enter this sacred tomb shall swift be visiting the wings of death.'
Another curse stated: Let the hand raised against my form be withered! Let them be destroyed who attack my name, my foundation, my effigies, the images like unto me!'
Sadly these translations were all fictitious. There were differing opinions as to the reasons for the deaths. Carnarvon, for instance, was already a weak sick man - but some newspapers claimed he had pricked himself with a sharp object - while in the tomb - and this released micro-organisms laid dormant for 3000 years.
A Pharaohs curse or not? The Egyptologist Herbert E Winlock compiled a list of more down to earth explanations for each of the deaths. But whose to really say, there are always differing opinions about such subjects. In life there are those who are willing to believe and those who will never believe anything away from the 'normal' way of thinking.
The Ancient Egyptians And Their World Of Dreams
Cleopatra's Needle Didn't Want To Come To London
The Mystery Of The Rosetta Stone Coincidence
Tuesday, August 16
The day Bernice was born the midwife, who was due to attend, was held up and it was left to a neighbour to help with her birth.
The midwife did eventually arrive, all breathless and flustered, and explained that she had been delivering another baby at exactly the same time.
This was in 1936 and as a small girl Bernice was obsessed with the idea that the other baby born at the same time as her was actually her twin. She dreamt about meeting her but never did.
The years rolled by, as they tend to do, and Bernice reached retirement age. As a special treat she was given a gift of spending a few days in a lovely hotel in a beautiful part of Britain, somewhere she had never been previously. It turned out to be a very remarkable marking of her birthday.
Along with her husband she had an excellent evening meal at the hotel and afterwards they made their way to the ballroom where there was to be music and entertainment. They spent an enjoyable time listening to the music and a talented singer.
A while later the compere made an announcement: "I have been informed that visiting us tonight is a lady from Nottingham and she has joined us here to celebrate her birthday. Could the lady stand up please?"
Bernice takes up the story: "In astonishment I glanced at my husband; he must have supplied the hotel staff with that information. But gazing at him I realised he seemed as shocked as I was by the announcement.
It was then I noticed another guest had also stood up. We stared at each other as folk surrounded us and began singing Happy Birthday.
I later discovered that not only did we share the same birthday and the same year but incredibly had been born at the same time of day.
More astonishing this stranger was in fact, the very person who so many years earlier had been the reason the midwife had been unable to deliver me.
What an amazing coincidence that, after so many years, we got to finally meet so far from our birth place.
Stranger, too, for us to meet for the very first time on our birthdays. Indeed it did feel almost as though I was meeting my twin."
Further Coincidence Stories:
A Proud Dad Thanks To A Coincidence
The Guest House And The Girl In a Bikini Coincidence
The Coincidence of The Triplets' Babies
Monday, August 15
I got no immediate answer, but nothing strange there as 'messages' often come later through the day when least expecting them.
After breakfast I switched on my phone and it rang straight away. Message: Don't forget today is my Gran's birthday. Okay it was a 'message' but was only something I'd fed in myself when I changed phones.
My grandmother lived to the ripe old age of 103 and died in the 1980s. She was someone I often saw as a child as she lived nearby. I probably wouldn't have remembered, however, that it was her birthday if it wasn't for my phone.
Later that day my grandson came to visit unexpectedly - along with my daughter-in-law, as he's only just over a year old. As a proud grandad I think he's very special and I had an opportunity to play with him.
He's crawling like he's on turbo charge and stands up by himself with a big proud grin but doesn't actually walk yet. I was crawling after him and he screeched to a halt and sat looking at an antique dog ornament we have. I sat next to him and he gabbled some baby-talk phrase, reached out and gently touched the dog's nose making a sort of 'ah' sound. He sat there transfixed before shooting off again.
The strange thing is that the dog belonged to my gran. There was originally a pair but one got broken mysteriously a while back. I always liked these dogs, for some reason, when a child and gran gave them to me when I was in my teens. She thought I might as well have them then and not wait until she was dead.
The dog(s) has been with me ever since through several life changes and moves. Some of its markings are fading but to be expected as it is well over 100 years old.
What I'm thinking is that perhaps little Samuel sensed something about the dog. I believe children see all sorts of things that most of us don't any more. Why else would he stop by the dog and touch it so gently, almost with respect? Perhaps he knows or once knew my gran in another life. Maybe that was the message for me.
Death Is Nothing at All
Her Husband Chimed The Clock From Beyond The Grave
The Dancing Ghosts On The Jurassic Coast
Sunday, August 14
Wherever we are, God’s in that moment, God’s speaking to us, and if we’ve just got our ears open and our antennas up, there’s no lack of inspiration. He’s not silent. We just have to be listening.
Steven Curtis Chapman, Press conference after 2007 GMA Music Awards
Inspiration is not the exclusive privilege of poets or artists. There is, there has been, there will always be a certain group of people whom inspiration visits. It's made up of all those who've consciously chosen their calling and do their job with love and imagination. It may include doctors, teachers, gardeners — I could list a hundred more professions. Their work becomes one continuous adventure as long as they manage to keep discovering new challenges in it. Difficulties and setbacks never quell their curiosity. A swarm of new questions emerges from every problem that they solve. Whatever inspiration is, it's born from a continuous 'I don't know.'
Wisława Szymborska, The Poet and the World
Inspiration is a slender river of brightness leaping from a vast and eternal knowledge, it exceeds reason more perfectly than reason exceeds the knowledge of the senses.
Sri Aurobindo, Thoughts and Aphorisms
There'll be what you might call a moment of inspiration – a way of seeing or feeling or remembering, an instance or a person that's made a large impression. Like the sand and the oyster, it's a creative irritant. In each poem, I'm trying to reveal a truth, so it can't have a fictional beginning.
Carol Ann Duffy, Interviewed in The Guardian, December 4, 2005
I believe in intuition and inspiration. Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to evolution. It is, strictly speaking, a real factor in scientific research.
Albert Einstein, Cosmic Religion
I'll get an inspiration and start painting; then I'll forget everything, everything except how things used to be and how to paint it so people will know how we used to live.
Grandma Moses, As quoted in her obituary in The New York Times
My inspirations don't come from outer space, they just come to me. I have no idea why they come when they do.
Joe Satriani, As quoted in Guitar Magazine
I decided that it was not wisdom that enabled [poets] to write their poetry, but a kind of instinct or inspiration, such as you find in seers and prophets who deliver all their sublime messages without knowing in the least what they mean.
Socrates 469-399 BC
While I was held prisoner, sweet inspiration educated me and laws were imparted to me in a speech which had no words.
Taliesin, The Tale of Taleisin
Who knows where inspiration comes from. Perhaps it arises from desperation. Perhaps it comes from the flukes of the universe, the kindness of the muses.
I invented something called The Oxford Muse. The Muses were women in mythology. They did not teach or require to be worshipped, but they were a source of inspiration. They taught you how to cultivate your emotions through the different arts in order to reach a higher plane. What is lacking now, I believe, is somewhere you can get that stimulation not information, but stimulation where you can meet just that person, or find just that situation, which will give you the idea of invention, of carrying out some project which interests you, and show how it can become a project of interest to other people.
Theodore Zeldin, About The Oxford Muse Foundation
When inspiration does not come, I go for a walk, go to the movie, talk to a friend, let go... The muse is bound to return again, especially if I turn my back!
20 Zen Sayings And Proverbs To Ponder
Nine Questions Including The Most Difficult Of All
21 Questions Of Life Answered By The Buddha
Saturday, August 13
Another Amy Winehouse story today. This is from Kristian Marr, of the Spring Heeled Jack band, who has been described as Amy's 'lover, musical soul mate and best friend'.
In the early hours of the day Amy died Kristian received a text from her saying, 'I'm gonna be here always xx BUT ARE YOU OK? xxx'. He didn't reply as he was sleeping. Later that day he learnt of her death.
He was devastated but the following night had an amazing dream. In Kristian's own words:
"But that night she visited me in this incredibly vivid dream. I was with a group of friends. Amy joined us and I was astonished to see her alive.
Before I could speak she squeezed my hand, gave me a big smile and said, 'I'm still here ... I'll always be here.'"
Trish and Rob MacGregor, in their book Synchronicity and the Other Side, talk about contacts from the 'dead' within dreams and how this can be brought about. In Kristian's case his dream of Amy simply happened but - however they come about - meeting a deceased loved one in a dream can be very comforting.
Photo: Amy Winehouse Poster Print