“The demon’s target is not the possessed; it is us the observers…everyone in this house. I think the point is to make us despair…to reject our humanity: to see ourselves as ultimately bestial, vile and putrescent; without dignity; ugly; unworthy.”
– William Peter Blatty, The Exorcist
On my sister site, Paranormal Insights, I decided for the month of December to bring you, the reader, home to my neck of the woods for the Christmas holiday. And so, by keeping in tune with this theme, I want to do the same with this site.
The above quote is taken from the movie “The Exorcist.” Most paranormal enthusiasts are very familiar with this possession that took place here in St. Louis in 1949. Robbie Doe was a young boy from the East Coast area who was held responsible for what may have been considered Recurrent Spontaneous Psychokinesis (RSPK). His extreme activity confounded the professionals and forced a focused discipline from priests never seen before in current history. The lines drawn around this exorcism are so blurred between the field of parapsychology and paranormal demonic activity that it is difficult to tell if his possession was derived from this physical world, the spiritual one or both.
“In what is perhaps one of the most remarkable experiences of its kind in recent religious history, a 14 year-old Mount Rainier boy has been freed by a Catholic priest of possession by the devil…. the boy broke into a violent tantrum screaming, cursing, and voicing of Latin phrases – a language he had never studied – whenever the priest reached those climactic points of the 27-page ritual in which he commanded the demons to depart from the boy.” – Washington Post, August 20, 1949
Geographically, if you search Google Maps, you’ll find the house of this notorious supernatural event located at 8435 Roanoke Drive in Bel-Nor, Missouri. A photo is pictured above and has been the source of many books and investigations.
Local writers like Troy Taylor and Steven LaChance offer up their versions of the story, which are quite different from the movie. The real stories are based on the actual people and priests involved in this historically controversial event. Troy has personally interviewed one of the priests before he died. I invite you to check him out at this link:
Steven’s perspective on this incident brings it into the broader spectrum of how it affected the city of St. Louis in general. You can find him here:
I Always Feel Like Somebody’s Watching Me
When we think of a spirit releasing from or attaching to a human body, we tend to think of two things: the rising of the soul out of the body at the point of death and exorcisms. Death is a process that we have little to no control over – when your ticket is pulled, it’s time to go. Exorcisms are, in reality, an extreme form of spirit attachment that is not as common as folks might be apt to believe. Although there are numerous claims that exorcisms are on the steady rise worldwide, these phenomena are not necessarily a concern for most of us. There are spirits, though, who do affect our daily lives – and we do not even realize it. Here is where the gentle practice of spirit release therapy is called into action.
What exactly is this discipline? Before this question is answered, keep in mind that today’s science was yesterday’s myth. Many of the things that were once considered as coming from some mysterious realm of magic can now be tested and explained by science. With spiritual matters, this too will only be a matter of time.
“There is a tension between what the physical sciences can accept and what people experience in their subjective reality. This is not helpful for the person who suffers distress that has its origin in a spiritual domain. It is therefore necessary for medical science to be able to expand its frames of reference and accommodate real subjective experiences in order that they can be treated effectively.”
In Spirit Release Therapy (SRT) it is understood that certain spirits are able to affect each one of us at any given time. Sometimes this is done in a good way, but with SRT, entities that negatively affect people are the main concern. These entities may be spirits who have died and have not yet passed on through the Light or they may be mischievous or malevolent spirits who seek out potential victims. The spirits do not necessarily enter into the human host, although sometimes they do.
Snippets in History
The medical professional who is credited with pioneering SRT is Dr. William Baldwin, a man who left the field of dentistry and decided to pursue a passion. In his doctoral dissertation in psychology he put forth the first serious effort in considering spirit release therapy. His approaches and techniques may be a bit controversial, but the basis of his work does hold merit. Here is an example of a case study by one of his advocates, Dr. T.J. Palmer:
“The schoolgirl who could not walk. This was a fifteen-year-old girl who had progressively lost the use of her legs until she had to be taken to school in a wheelchair. There was no medical explanation for her condition and when I [Dr. Palmer] visited her home she was seen to be crawling on her elbows from room to room as she dragged her legs behind her. On investigation, it was discovered that when she was eight years-old [she had fallen victim to abuse]. The fear generated by this experience attracted a discarnate entity that used the fear to attach itself and incapacitate her. This case is representative of how…emotions emit an energetic frequency that acts as a beacon to attract negative spirit entities.”
This example relates how certain spirits are able to influence, sometimes even completely alter, our lives. If this case study seems a little far-fetched, the let’s revisit a story that is closer to the hearts of those of us who love the paranormal.
Aaron Goodwin, as most of us already know, is an paranormal investigator and many times “ghost bait” for the hit show Ghost Adventures. He has documented his encounters from their lockdown at Bobby Mackey’s Music World in Wilder, Kentucky. He relates what happened as a result of a spirit attachment on his website Aaron Goodwin Collections:
“I wanted to just talk about what happened with my ex wife and I and of course Mackey’s. After I came home from Mackey’s the 1st time hunting there, everything changed for me. Right away we could notice something had followed me home from there. My ex-wife and I would share the same nightmares at night and went threw some crazy paranormal stuff. My nightmares had to do with this white bearded old guy that was always trying to get her and I. We would wake up at the same time at night. She would wake up screaming or out of breath. She would wake and talk about things that had to do with places I hunted. We would share the same dreams and the stuff that happened around the house was indescribable.”
This spirit attachment disrupted Aaron’s life so much that his marriage ended in divorce. The entity created an environment that drove a wedge between them. It interacted physically by performing different poltergeist activities. Then it made its way into the dream state and did not allow them to have peaceful nights. Any tensions that may have existed between Aaron and his wife would be exacerbated to a whole new and conflicting level. They may have constantly fought. Every little trigger that could be pushed, would have been initiated by the shadow entity. These are just a few of the things that can occur with spirit attachments.
Never Throw Caution into the Paranormal Wind
How is it possible that a spirit can influence us, many times without us even realizing it? The answer is simple: energy.
The ability to manipulate energy may single-handedly explain a great deal of paranormal activity. Ghosts are able to use and transform electromagnetic fields into energy that allows them to perform tasks such as speech, scratches, knocks, object movement, and many of the familiar interactions. This manipulation can be performed with a variety of other sources like lithium batteries and low-level radiation. Activity can also be utilized from humans themselves through their emotions.
As was stated earlier, our emotions can act as a beacon to attract unwanted spirits, and, as such, these same spirits can alter our mental states. Another physician, Dr. Parisetti has this to say:
“We have patients showing exceedingly weird symptoms and/or a variety of disruptive behaviours whom are reportedly cured by therapists by basically asking a ‘possessing spirit’ to leave their body.”
So we have observations in both the paranormal and scientific realms that warn us of the potential of spirit attachments and the consequences when this happens. Sometimes a priest must show up with his book of the Rite of Exorcisms or the patient may see a therapist for relief.
Why This Article?
My purpose in bringing out all of this information is to reveal the fact that everyone needs to be cautious when they dive into the field of paranormal investigation. Our field has been in the pioneer stage for over a couple decades and we have amassed an incredible amount of knowledge from our technological efforts. But always keep in mind that we are dealing with an unseen realm that, fundamentally, we do not understand.
We do not know exactly how spirits can do what they do or how far they can take a spirit attachment. We cannot specifically define the Natural Laws that govern the world on the other side of the veil and we certainly can never know the true intent of any spirit or entity. Ghosts can not only affect us emotionally, but they can physically alter us as well. Slowly the stories of para-enthusiasts suffering from heart palpitations, abrupt organ disruptions, and other medical conditions are being whispered among themselves. Could they simply be coincidences?
I certainly encourage further exploration, as I will continue to do so from the research end. But please, when you’re investigating that reportedly haunted site… never throw caution into the paranormal wind.
Flickr – Photo taken from the archive of Alice Popkorn