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How I Broke Houdini's Code

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How I Broke Houdini's Code
Thu Dec 10, 2020 11:02 am
  • Since the dawn of humankind, we have wondered if there is more to life than just the material, flesh and bone and 5 physical senses. My interest in Life After Death and all things mysterious and paranormal has spanned pretty much my entire life. I recall over the years about Houdini's interest in proving all mediums and the spiritualist movement in the 1920's was pure hogwash and could be explained through magicianship and trickery.

    What I did not know is that he setup a special set of words that would spell out a code word that only he and his wife could ever possibly know, and if he ever had a chance to bring it back through mediumship from beyond the grave he would do so. This is an astounding account that I personally believe validates the survival of consciousness after physical death. It's truly a fascinating read I highly recommend it. Skeptics, debunkers and believers all welcome.

    One of the most passionate exposers of mediums was Houdini, the magician. In the early twenties he threw the entire weight of his reputation as a magician behind his declaration that all mediums were fakes, and that he could duplicate any trick a medium could do.

    Although he later played a significant part in providing me (Arthur Ford) with status as a medium, I never met Houdini. He died in 1926 and at that time I was much too inconspicuous to attract his attention. The influence of Houdini upon the whole Spiritualist Movement cannot be understood without some comprehension of the distinction which was Houdini's.


    http://www.survivalafterdeath.info/arti ... oudini.htm
    Aros
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Re: How I Broke Houdini's Code
Thu Dec 17, 2020 3:06 pm
  • Props for having the courage to venture into this subject, Aros.

    Weirdly, I stumbled onto the topic of Spiritualism (not to be confused with spirituality) a few years ago via Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes. He wrote a fascinating book called The Vital Message which examined mediums, seances, automatic writing etc, applying the same forensics and scientific methods utilized by Holmes.

    Doyle was largely a fiction writer of course, so the skeptics might be forgiven for thinking this is simply another work of fiction, but it is not. It is a fairly exhaustive fact-based inquiry into phenomena that seemed to especially coalesce around the mid to late 1800s. The people he discussed existed and the facts of each case are corroborated by multiple witnesses. Many believe that mediums and psychics are all frauds and criminals - and some certainly are - so it was interesting that one of the inventors of criminology applied his methods to the subject fully expecting to debunk the con-artists. On the contrary, he became convinced of the validity of the spirit world.

    The same was true for eminent British chemist Sir William Crookes, a contemporary of Holmes and member of the Royal Society. Like Charles Darwin, Crookes was awarded the Society's highest honor - the Copely Medal - yet he courageously chose to study the subject of spiritualism knowing that it would cost him prestige amongst his colleagues. His writings on the subject are what we would expect from a scientist. He applied the same rigorous standards to the study of psychics that he did to the study of physics. His book: 'Researches into Modern Spiritualism' delves into his experiments.

    Also, the biography of Daniel Dunglas Home, the greatest medium of his age, is also worth a look. He was feted by the greatest courts of Europe and various leading figures were present during his seances. If he was a fraud he nevertheless convinced some of the most brilliant people of the age of his legitimacy.

    But regarding the central topic of spirit surviving the death of the body, the University of Southampton interviewed 2060 patients with NDE or OBEs and made some surprising discoveries. Their research is here:

    https://www.southampton.ac.uk/news/2014 ... study.page

    Several other universities have departments dedicated to the study of NDEs. Dr. Greyson at UVA is one of the more prominent.

    https://med.virginia.edu/perceptual-stu ... earch-nde/

    I appreciate the skepticism that such a subject invites, but I do not think we should callously ignore the evidence because it offends our materialist biases. If, a few thousand years ago, you had insisted that there was a microscopic world filled with bacterium most would have thought you crazy...and then came the microscope. Currently we do not have the technology to "measure" the spirit, but there is enough evidence to suggest that there is probably something there to measure. I'm glad that so many universities are seriously contending with the topic.

    I look forward to watching the doc you mentioned.
    Thunderhawk
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Re: How I Broke Houdini's Code
Thu Dec 17, 2020 10:39 pm
  • What a completely wonderful and intelligent reply Thunderhawk, thank you for taking the time. Quite frankly I am surprised when this topic is met with silence by the majority. The very idea that our consciousness survives physical death is an amazing prospect. The Materialists among us will always disregard this notion without that "microscope" that can prove it scientifically, beyond all doubt. The problem as I see it, is that we are dealing potentially with something that is outside of our very firm 5-physical-sense-based reality. It is more of a vibrational, frequency matter. Think of our every day reality as simply one particular radio station. Think of alternate realities as just another flip on the dial.

    Whenever I've heard the question, "Well if spirits are real, why can't we (normally) see them?" I always think about a propeller. When static, you can see it perfectly. However, the faster the RPMs the less you can see it until to your eyes it has completely disappeared. Well, we know it didn't disappear, but we can no longer see it. I think of us in the physical as that static prop. If we have Souls/Spirits that live beyond our physical bodies as I personally believe we all do, then the Spirit/Soul is simply now that prop spinning at a high RPM. Frequency. Vibration. Anyhow just food for thought for those on the outside looking in.

    Most folks who know me know I am all about the paranormal, UFOs, ghosts, you name it. What many do not know is I am highly skeptical. My daughter and I watch all kinds of paranormal shows as they are so ubiquitous these days but if you watch with me you might be surprised how often I spend debunking the segments. However, I am equally happy to be open-minded and admit when I think I've witnessed something that may be authentic.

    I am familiar with some of those you listed but I am eager to click on those links and read more. Thanks again!
    Aros
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Re: How I Broke Houdini's Code
Fri Dec 18, 2020 8:45 am
  • I appreciate that you are still skeptical, even though you are more open-minded than most. We all need to follow the evidence no matter where it leads. Sadly, we live in a time where there is actually less and less skepticism. If the government and their preferred experts decree something to be true, most shut up and obey. If you question the "experts" pronouncements then you are a science-denier, etc, even though eminent scientists often disagree with "official" conclusions. It scares me not a little. But I digress...

    The propeller is a great metaphor. There is speculation that the spirit is modulated at different frequencies than physical matter. I wonder if this might be one of the reasons there seems to be less incidents of spirit manifestations than what was recorded prior to the 20th century? More interference upon those frequencies from diffuse energies, like electric grids? For example, how a radio broadcast is disrupted by lightning storms? Admittedly that is pure, baseless, unscientific speculation, but it's interesting how light and energy effected the 'success' of seances. D.D. Home was one of the few who could still perform amidst ambient light. Perhaps many of the other mediums preferred a darker room because it made it easier to defraud the gullible - or perhaps there is a photonic frequency - a channel - that is more sympathetic to spiritual energy? Dunno. Just spit balling.

    It does seem like we'll need the proper antenna to solve these riddles and, sadly, that antenna is usually some new-age, chemically-dependent hippy who just happens to have the "sight". Thus we are left with subjectivity and weak anecdotal evidence. Perhaps one day we can build a machine that can record these energies - make contact with the other side and see the whirling propeller? Like a ouija board working on Windows? Probably not. It seems spirit needs to be channeled through spirit...
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Re: How I Broke Houdini's Code
Fri Dec 18, 2020 11:43 am
  • I definitely think you are on to something i.e. interference, I think electromagnetism is at the center of much of this type of phenomena, and while may explain some of these purported hauntings, I do not think it explains them all. Too much veridical evidence exists in regards to NDEs and OBEs to explain it all away.

    Studies such as this one by Jeffrey Long, MD for instance, clearly showcases that NDEs cannot be all explained away in the usual Materialist explanations such as a lack of oxygen to the brain and so forth:

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6172100/

    For instance, how would one explain a person, blind at birth, suddenly seeing with incredible detail during their NDE in which they were clinically dead with no brainwave activity, no heartbeat for several minutes or more? How someone in complete cardiac arrest was resuscitated to later reveal the precise conversations and actions and even clothing of nurses and doctors they would have no way of ever knowing as they came into the ER completely unconscious with no vital signs? Hardcore atheists and materialists who, after having an NDE, have completely done an about face and now are fully convinced in an intelligent source that binds us all and every element of reality.

    The examples go on and on and on. I have personally read tens of thousands (not an exaggeration, I am a bit obsessed, lol) of testimonies that is overwhelmingly convincing that there is far more at work here than some mysterious element of the brain that creates and explains all of these away.

    Numerous studies suggest the old paradigm that our brain is the creator and source of consciousness is quickly being peeled away in favor of the brain merely being a receiver for consciousness, and that consciousness itself resides outside of the rigid parameters of space and time. The brain, therein, is merely the car. The driver is consciousness, and the real I AM, and the part of us that it would appear does not need the physical body to operate.

    I think we are living in wonderous times on so many levels. Advancements in our understanding of quantum physics and new physics appears to be building a very real bridge between science and the mystical. I may not live long enough to see objective, verifiable scientific proof of the survival of consciousness but I do very much think we are headed in that direction.
    Aros
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Re: How I Broke Houdini's Code
Sun Dec 20, 2020 11:52 pm
  • Aros wrote:...I have personally read tens of thousands (not an exaggeration, I am a bit obsessed, lol) of testimonies that is overwhelmingly convincing that there is far more at work here than some mysterious element of the brain that creates and explains all...

    That's incredible. How do you make the time between reading the accounts of alien abductees :)

    Send the link to those resources if you can.

    There does seem to be some symmetry to these reports that transcend nationality and religion - bright light, meeting departed family members, etc. I'm curious if there is something more idiosyncratic that also overlaps- like a particular smell or sound? Wouldn't it be great if everyone who came back reported seeing a yellow sign with the number 438 on it? If there was cascading corroboration among the thousands of NDE experiencers with that level of specificity we'd no longer need to speculate about whether consciousness exists outside of the body. Instead, while there do seem to be commonalities among the reports, there are inconsistencies too. Differing topographies, flying vs walking, a Jesus-type figure present in some, not in others. It muddles things.
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Re: How I Broke Houdini's Code
Mon Dec 21, 2020 12:49 pm
  • It appears (if you were to believe the accounts as described) that our belief systems create what we see. For instance, if someone was a Christian and expected to see Jesus, that is likely what they will see (although it is interesting to note that many agnostics, atheists and non-Christians have claimed to see Jesus as well). Often times a non-religious person who crosses over the death threshold will see a Being of Light. Many accounts people are often told by these beings that they will manifest themselves based on expectations, comfort, religious upbringing and so forth.

    There are numerous similarities in most accounts that defy ordinary explanation. Thought creates reality in these realms and seem to be the very building blocks of manifestation. If one expects nothingness when they die, that you just seize to exist, it appears that is precisely what they will get. At least at first, until they have a thought, and that thought causes them to question if they are thinking, they must still be alive on some level. And at that point a sliver of light may appear and perhaps a guide or Being, gently trying to help them move beyond the prison of their misconceptions.

    From what I've read there does appear to be a Hell, but it's not the fire and brimestone, Devil-with-a-pitchfork we are taught growing up. It usually takes on a cold and dark place where lost souls are trapped in their lower vibratory emotions such as hate, intolerance, greed, self-loathing and so on. Yet it seems that even the darkest of souls has an opportunity to move toward the light and closer to Source.

    I too would love that yellow sign everybody reports but based on the above, that would be impossible since the reality of what you see seems to be completely and utterly dependent on your thoughts, vibratory level, expectations and illusions. The few that have appeared to penetrate beyond the dimensions of illusion find it difficult to describe their experience because they all say there are simply no words in the human language that could ever describe it.

    How do you describe the color purple to someone who has been blind since birth? Or play a masterpiece symphony to someone who has been deaf since birth?

    Consciousness at least appears to live outside of time and space. Many suggest that we in fact are eternal beings, a sort of holographic, multi-dimensional essence. Think of it like being a drop of ocean water. You can scoop up a glass full of ocean water and although it is taken from the ocean, it is and always be a part of the whole that is that ocean.

    One thing I've learned in this research is that sh*t gets deep in a hurry, lol.
    Aros
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Re: How I Broke Houdini's Code
Mon Dec 21, 2020 6:28 pm
  • It's evident that you're an artist in reading your interpretation of these phenomena. You describe things very vividly, as if you'd experienced it yourself. I lack your gift of imagination. I'm a pretty hard hearted businessman from the Objectivist school. I crave data, experimentation, and especially falsifiability by which we exclude error and move closer to truth. These reports aren't falsifiable since they are transmitted through the "undependable narrator". That they are often synchronous is intriguing but not enough.

    What I've read from the 19th century accounts is extremely precise. Example: a medium channeling a spirit which provides the exact location of a pocket watch lost to a royal family for over 150 years. Things like that. But, still, it wasn't my watch. I wasn't there to witness the exchange. So I'm skeptical...but searching.
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Re: How I Broke Houdini's Code
Tue Dec 22, 2020 4:08 am
  • Thunderhawk, you and I are kindred spirits. We may approach this phenomena in our own ways but I see we both seek truth and don't allow our minds to close to the point of losing any real objectivity. I don't just speak in research but also experience. I have been touched by the mysterious in my life a multitude of times. Even if I wasn't naturally open minded, I would still be hard pressed to ignore the fact that there is more to life than meets the eye.

    You require hardcore evidence. The kind science requires, to prove a theory as real. I respect that, fully. Most do, but more importantly, you show a willingness to keep an open mind and that's all too rare. Like politics, most folks tend to reside on one side of the fence or the other. Rare is the individual who demonstrates true bipartisan-like qualities when approaching the esoteric.

    I recall one time in these very walls of the Lounge, I opened myself up and this materialist with a MD I think shot me down. Fine, but what was the worst part is how smug he was about his opinion. As if he truly had any better understanding about consciousness than I did, simply because he was a man of science and I was a mere "believer" with nothing more to offer than anecdotes.

    That is dangerous thinking. The progression of science requires, no, DEMANDS open mindedness in order to advance our understanding of reality. Can you imagine if we all still thought the world was flat and that our earth was the center of the universe? It took courage to peel away those falsities. Now most of us (yes I acknowledge the Flat Earthers and my son is one of them, ugh...A story for another day) know different to the point we think it's absurd that that was once the prevailing wisdom of the day.

    There's a saying, seeing is believing but believing is seeing. I've had the luxury in my life to see both sides. But proof? Ever the elusive elixir.
    Aros
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