From the publisher’s website: For the first time, the best articles from "The Skeptic" in one volume. The collected writings from over 20 years of the publication, with articles by eminent academic researchers, and contributions from sceptics including Stephen Fry and Paul Daniels, and a foreword by Guardian political writer, Simon Hoggart. Why do statues weep? Did Nostradamus really predict 9/11? Is it true that we only use 10% of our brain power? Does quantum theory explain the mystery of consciousness? For 21 years, questions like these have been posed, and answered, in the pages of The Skeptic magazine, Britain’s foremost and longest-running skeptical magazine, dedicated to the pursuit of truth through reason and evidence. This collection brings together the best articles from the magazine’s archive in one myth-busting volume. It covers a wide range of topics, including psychic fraudsters and claims of psychic healing and alien abduction; near-death experiences, false memories, and much more.
Why Statues Weep, The Philosophy Press, April 2010. ISBN-13: 978-0953761128
From the publisher’s website: The central theme of this volume is to re-examine the received concepts and images of ghosts in various religious cultures ranging from the Ancient Near East and Egypt to the Old Testament, the Classical Era, Early Medieval and Early Modern Europe, Early India, and Medieval China. As a religious phenomenon, the realm of ghosts has been less studied than the realm of the divine. Through a collaborative effort by scholars from different disciplines, this volume proposes a multi-cultural approach to construct a wider and complicated picture of the phenomenon of ghosts and spirits in human societies and to have a grasp of the various problems involved in understanding the phenomenon of ghost.
Rethinking Ghosts in World Religions, Brill, Leiden, March 2009. ISBN: 978 90 04 17152 7
From the publisher’s website: With this issue, The Anomalist seeks to provide sudden jolts of illumination to spark the imagination. "Electricity of the Mind" is instant CPR for the head.
Electricity of the Mind. Anomalist Books, March 2010. ISBN: 978-1933665399
From the publisher's website: A young man of Dublin walks past a row of streetlights at night–and they go out, one by one, as he passes. An engineer in Woodville, Washington, is stopped by police and his car searched to find out what he's doing to their streetlights. An Australian in the entertainment industry parks his car in a parking lot, and the light above him goes out–until the following evening when he parks in precisely the same space and the light comes on again.
And that's not all. When a guest in a restaurant in Athens, Greece, asks that the music be turned down, they refuse–whereupon she "kills" the restaurant's electricity and they eat the rest of their meal by candlelight. Other people affect traffic lights, computers, railway crossings...
This is Street Light Interference (SLI). Once considered to be folklore–something that happened to a friend of a friend–today it is recognized as a scientific enigma with implications for our knowledge of the universe, including ourselves. In this, the first full-length book on SLI, we hear from some of the hundreds of SLIders who have reported their uncanny experiences, and consider the wider implications of this fascinating phenomenon.
SLIders, Anomalist Books, June 2010. ISBN-13: 978-1933665474
From the publisher’s website: As a cardiologist, Pim van Lommel was struck by the number of his patients who claimed to have near-death experiences as a result of their heart attacks. As a scientist, this was difficult for him to accept: Wouldn't it be scientifically irresponsible of him to ignore the evidence of these stories? Faced with this dilemma, van Lommel decided to design a research study to investigate the phenomenon under the controlled environment of a cluster of hospitals with a medically trained staff.
For more than twenty years van Lommel systematically studied such near-death experiences in a wide variety of hospital patients who survived a cardiac arrest. In 2001, he and his fellow researchers published his study on near-death experiences in the renowned medical journal The Lancet. The article caused an international sensation as it was the first scientifically rigorous study of this phenomenon. Now available for the first time in English, van Lommel offers an in-depth presentation of his results and theories in this book that has already sold over 125,000 copies in Europe.
Van Lommel provides scientific evidence that the near-death phenomenon is an authentic experience that cannot be attributed to imagination, psychosis, or oxygen deprivation. He further reveals that after such a profound experience, most patients' personalities undergo a permanent change. In van Lommel's opinion, the current views on the relationship between the brain and consciousness held by most physicians, philosophers, and psychologists are too narrow for a proper understanding of the phenomenon. In Consciousness Beyond Life, van Lommel shows that our consciousness does not always coincide with brain functions and that, remarkably and significantly, consciousness can even be experienced separate from the body.
Consciousness Beyond Life, HarperOne, 8 June 2010. ISBN: 9780061777257
The Science of Premonitions: How Knowing the Future Can Help Us Avoid Danger, Maximize Opportunities, and Create a Better Life, by Dossey, Larry
From the publisher’s website: In the New York Times bestseller, Healing Words, Dr. Dossey investigated why patients surrounded by prayer healed faster and more completely than patients who were not. Now, in The Science of Premonitions, Dossey uses cutting-edge science to make a convincing case that premonitions are real, common, and helpful. Then Dossey explores research on mindfulness and meditation to show readers how they can cultivate and take advantage of premonitions. Packed with compelling case studies and thought-provoking findings, this is a book for the skeptical mind and the believer's heart, and will be greeted warmly by "anyone who is interested in knowing about the deeper meaning of our existence."
The Science of Premonitions. Plume, May 2010. ISBN 9780452296329
From the publisher’s website: The seer (mantis), an expert in the art of divination, operated in ancient Greek society through a combination of charismatic inspiration and diverse skills ranging from examining the livers of sacrificed animals to spirit possession. Unlike the palm readers and mediums who exist on the fringe of modern society, many seers were highly paid, well respected, educated members of the elite who played an essential role in the conduct of daily life, political decisions, and military campaigns. Armies, for example, never went anywhere without one. This engaging book, the only comprehensive study of this fascinating figure, enters into the socioreligious world of ancient Greece to explore what seers did, why they were so widely employed, and how their craft served as a viable and useful social practice.
The Seer in Ancient Greece, University of California Press, March 2009 (paperback) ISBN: 9780520259935
From the publisher's website: Evidence of the Afterlife shares the firsthand accounts of people who have died and lived to tell about it. Through their work at the Near Death Experience Research Foundation, radiation oncologist Jeffrey Long and his wife, Jody, have gathered thousands of accounts of near-death experiences (NDEs) from all over the world. In addition to sharing the personal narrative of their experiences, visitors to the website are asked to fill out a one hundred–item questionnaire designed to isolate specific elements of the experience and to flag counterfeit accounts.
The website has become the largest NDE research database in the world, containing over 1,600 NDE accounts. The people whose stories are captured in the database span all age groups, races, and religious affiliations and come from all over the world, yet the similarities in their stories are as awe-inspiring as they are revealing. Using this treasure trove of data, Dr. Long explains how medical evidence fails to explain these reports and why there is only one plausible explanation—that people have survived death and traveled to another dimension.
Evidence of the Afterlife, HarperOne, January 2010. ISBN-13: 978-0061452550
From the publisher’s website: The power of the mind has long been debated, debunked, studied for military applications, and used in science fiction. These collected case histories explore the phenomena of levitation, stigmata, inedia, paranormal activity, bilocation, fire immunity, luminosity, and the teleportation of matter. The results of more than a century of formal experimental research are discussed, as are resultant training techniques, theories, and controlled experiments used to test or bolster telekinetic abilities.
Pamela Rae Heath, M.D., has written widely about such topics as experiential research, place memory, the afterlife and mind-matter interaction. She is co-founder of the Paranormal Research Organization, and is also a member of the Parapsychological Association, the Society for Psychical Research and the Society for Scientific Exploration. She lives in California.
Mind-Matter Interaction, McFarland, May 2010. ISBN 978-0786449712
Two Haunted Counties: A Ghost Hunter’s Companion To Bedfordshire & Hertfordshire , by Broughall, Tony, edited Adams, Paul
From the publisher’s website: A twelfth century Gilbertine priory, a Chrysler car factory, a de-sanctified church and a Georgian period lavatory-just a few of the haunted localities from the case files of 1970s ghost buster Tony Broughall. Here you will find some of the most interesting and unusual of our native British ghosts, from a headless witch and a spectral plague cart through to the sinister shade of a clawed monk and the apparition of a Second World War tank. This practical guide covers over 150 notorious and lesser known hauntings of both Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire in an easy to access A-Z format and includes original accounts of paranormal investigations by one of this country's senior and highly experienced figures-perfect for practical researchers and armchair ghost hunters alike. Foreword by Peter Underwood FRSA.
Tony Broughall has over forty years experience as an investigator of paranormal activity. Paul Adams is a paranormal historian and co-author of The Borley Rectory Companion (2009)
Two Haunted Counties, Limbury Press, Luton, Beds., 2010. 156 pp. (paper) £8. 99. Illustrated (black and white). ISBN 978-0-9565228-0-1
The Return of the Dead: Ghosts, Ancestors, and the Transparent Veil of the Pagan Mind, by Lecouteux, Claude
From the publisher’s website: How the ghost stories of pagan times reveal the seamless union existing between the world of the living and the afterlife.
• Demonstrates how Medieval Christianity transformed the more corporeal ghost encountered in pagan cultures with the disembodied form known today
• Explains how the returning dead were once viewed as either troublemakers or guarantors of the social order
The impermeable border the modern world sees existing between the world of the living and the afterlife was not visible to our ancestors. The dead could--and did--cross back and forth at will. The pagan mind had no fear of death, but some of the dead were definitely to be dreaded: those who failed to go peacefully into the afterlife but remained on this side in order to right a wrong that had befallen them personally or to ensure that the law promoted by the ancestors was being respected. But these dead individuals were a far cry from the amorphous ectoplasm that is featured in modern ghost stories. These earlier visitors from beyond the grave--known as revenants--slept, ate, and fought like men, even when, like Klaufi of the Svarfdaela Saga, they carried their heads in their arms.
Revenants were part of the ancestor worship prevalent in the pagan world and still practiced in indigenous cultures such as the Fang and Kota of equatorial Africa, among others. The Church, eager to supplant this familial faith with its own, engineered the transformation of the corporeal revenant into the disembodied ghost of modern times, which could then be easily discounted as a figment of the imagination or the work of the devil. The sanctified grounds of the church cemetery replaced the burial mounds on the family farm, where the ancestors remained as an integral part of the living community. This exile to the formal graveyard, ironically enough, has contributed to the great loss of the sacred that characterizes the modern world.
The Return of the Dead: Ghosts, Ancestors, and the Transparent Veil of the Pagan Mind. Inner Traditions, July 2009. ISBN-13: 978-1-59477-318-1
From the publisher's website: Most scholars dismiss research into the paranormal as pseudoscience, a frivolous pursuit for the paranoid or gullible. Even historians of religion, whose work naturally attends to events beyond the realm of empirical science, have shown scant interest in the subject. But the history of psychical phenomena, Jeffrey J. Kripal contends, is an untapped source of insight into the sacred and by tracing that history through the last two centuries of Western thought we can see its potential centrality to the critical study of religion.
Kripal grounds his study in the work of four major figures in the history of paranormal research: psychical researcher Frederic Myers; writer and humorist Charles Fort; astronomer, computer scientist, and ufologist Jacques Vallee; and philosopher and sociologist Bertrand Méheust. Through incisive analyses of these thinkers, Kripal ushers the reader into a beguiling world somewhere between fact, fiction, and fraud. The cultural history of telepathy, teleportation, and UFOs; a ghostly love story; the occult dimensions of science fiction; cold war psychic espionage; galactic colonialism; and the intimate relationship between consciousness and culture all come together in Authors of the Impossible, a dazzling and profound look at how the paranormal bridges the sacred and the scientific.
Authors of the Impossible: The Paranormal and the Sacred, by J. J. Kripal. Chicago University Press, May 2010. ISBN-13: 978-0226453866
From the publisher’s website: Despite the scientific and intellectual advances of the past five hundred years, populist belief in the supernatural, as evidenced by media investigations into the paranormal, continues to be culturally and socially relevant. Throughout history, ghost beliefs have been a source of literary inspiration and learned investigation. They prompted public panics and scandals, and have been manipulated for political and religious purposes. This five-volume reset edition draws together representative and defining printed sources to reveal changing perceptions of ghosts at different social levels from the Reformation through to the twentieth century in Britain and America.
In the face of growing scholarly interest in the history of ghosts, this groundbreaking edition is the first documentary survey of the field from the early modern era through to the industrial age. Sources have been chosen to present a clear chronological story of continuities and changes in the social and intellectual relevance of ghosts. They focus on the key published debates that emerged in each century, and illustrate the full range of literary formats that reported or discussed ghosts. American material is included in the final two volumes to reflect the US birth of nineteenth-century spiritualism.
The edition benefits from full scholarly apparatus, including a general introduction, volume introductions, headnotes, endnotes and a consolidated index in the final volume. The set is broadly interdisciplinary and will appeal to those researching Social and Cultural History, History of Science, History of Religion, Literature and History of the Supernatural, as well as Early-Modern, Eighteenth- and Nineteenth-Century History.
Five volume set, approx. 2,000pp. Pickering and Chatto, February 2010. ISBN 978 1 85196 989 0
From the publisher’s website: The Supernatural North is the latest in a long line of books by Darren W Ritson. This exciting new volume details scores of the most terrifying ghost tales and supernatural legends that the north of England has to offer. From the Scottish Borders to South Yorkshire, from the North West Coast to the North East Coast, this book is sure to delight all ghost enthusiasts.
Featured in this volume is a full chapter devoted to the South Shields Poltergeist case which the author co-investigated with Mike Hallowell in 2006. A large section of the book is also dedicated to the north of England’s most famous haunting, Willington Mill, along with various other chapters detailing spine chilling ghosts and blood curdling hauntings from the North Country. There is also a fascinating and detailed look at the north’s screaming skull legends.
Places visited in the book number into their hundreds and include theatres, castles, public houses, hotels, stately homes, public parks and even a lighthouse or two. With a lengthily foreword by Peter Underwood FRSA – acknowledged as the world’s leading ghost hunter, The Supernatural North promises to be one of the finest ghost books you will ever read.
Amberley Publishing, January 2010. ISBN 9781848682771
From the publisher’s website: The first book to explore, in depth, the complete range of paranormal phenomena reported in Brighton & Hove. Here you will find accounts of well-known hauntings, as well as many previously undiscovered locations.
This fascinating account of local ‘sightings’ looks at traditional historical legends as well as modern day experiences, providing fresh knowledge together with the author’s personal accounts of new and traditional stories.
Janet Cameron’s ghostly tour of the area is illustrated with many of her own photographs.
Amberley Publishing, November 2009. ISBN 9781848687165