spiritualism - members beliefs and thoughts

DenverGuy

New Member
Hi DenverGuy! I'm watching it! I got there before you on the above thread mentioned by mac. I think it's good and I was thinking of you when I saw episode four last night as it shows one of those retreats by the Forever Family foundation which you attended.
Hi Ruby,
Very cool. Today I am starting the book you recommended. I was wondering what you thought of the series. I am on #3. The seance stuff didn't do much for me, by the way. It seemed kind of silly to me. That guy Mike has the right approach. What did you think of it? I am looking forward to the FFF part. I really recommend those retreats. I can't think of a better resource for this subject.

Bluebird, as far as I know it's only available on Netflix. I normally don't subscribe to it because of a billing dispute long ago, but I am back for this month. Are you going to check it out?
 

Ruby

New Member
Hi all, hi DenverGuy! I've watched four so far. I was impressed with the FFF people who seemed very genuine in their wish to help people. I think you were in good hands there. The Dutch medium lady seemed very sincere to me when talking to Leslie Kean after her reading with the disappointed dark-haired boy (that was maybe Mick?) about the problems with mediumship now that so many people disclose so much online. (Are they clairvoyantly reading from online?!) The problem with mediums is that what they claim to be able to do sets them apart from the ordinary mortal. They can seem rather creepy and you can't be sure how to take them. You can easily feel you're the victim of a scam. I suppose we can try to bear in mind that in the past there were successful mediums who were never caught cheating. Physical mediumship gives me the creeps, but again, it was the Dutch lady, and she seemed to believe herself to be communicating with the spirit world, so perhaps not deliberately deceiving people. I once watched a video online of Stewart Alexander, (who is in the film but unseen, but he features more in the book). You can maybe find it somewhere. He is speaking to an audience about his work and it was both interesting and entertaining and he seems a down to earth character.
 

bluebird

New Member
I looked up "Surviving Death - Netflix" on YouTube, but while I was able to find trailers and reviews, I couldn't find any actual episodes. Still, thank you for the suggestion, raven.
 

mac

janitor and administrator
Staff member
I looked up "Surviving Death - Netflix" on YouTube, but while I was able to find trailers and reviews, I couldn't find any actual episodes. Still, thank you for the suggestion, raven.
me neither - just the adverts for the upcoming series, just started I think
 

DenverGuy

New Member
Ruby, you are right. The FFF people are terrific. I feel bad for Bob, having lost both his daughter and his wife, Phran (last year). I had talked to her on the phone over the years and we exchanged several e-mails. When she wrote back they were long e-mails, and when we talked on the phone it wasn't quick, either. She really cared and gave me a lot of reassurance. It felt really good to meet them. I knew even before then that they were the real deal and that this was/is a passion for them, not a way to make money.

I have 12 minutes to go in the 4th episode. I watch a little at a time. I will have to go back and see how Mike's reading went. I know he had a reading with a guy that didn't go well, but I don't remember one with a lady. That's a good point about the notion that they might be getting online information clairvoyantly. I never thought of that. That certainly wouldn't be cheating.

The seance and talking in those voices was weird, and I found myself laughing when the Dutch lady was talking like a little boy and that older guy. That wasn't the reaction I wanted, of course, but it seemed silly.

I am a little surprised that this show isn't more of a thing on this site.

I hope that if Mac, Bluebird, and others watch it they will post their valuable insight.
 

mac

janitor and administrator
Staff member
I discontinued Netflix at the end of December because the monthly payments were eating into my Wells Fargo checking account balance! There's now not a lot left in there and the way this pandemic's going I might not be returning to the USA so I don't plan on topping my balance up. The upshot of that, of course, is that I can't now view that series.

As for why it's not (quote) "more of a thing on this site" then my response is that this website appears moribund. Many existing members appear only occasionally, others I never see online or hear from - ever. I've created more forums than ever before but still there's bugger-all interest in them.

I'm often the only bod around and often there's not a single comment posted in days other than mine. Perhaps ALF is providing every single visitor and member with every resource and every answer they're seeking? Or perhaps nobody is much interested in any of it?

Maybe it's time to just knock it in the head. :(
 
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bluebird

New Member
mac, speaking for myself, since this site is mainly meant to be for afterlife discussions by those who largely already have a belief in an afterlife, there isn't much here I can add to or participate in. I do comment in those threads and on those subjects where I feel I have something to contribute, but much of what's on this site approaches afterlife topics from the position that such a place exists, and I don't necessarily hold that view.

I know you feel that site participation has been down for quite a long time, and you may be right, but more recently I would assume that the pandemic has something to do with it.
 

Ruby

New Member
DenverGuy, if I remember correctly from a few days ago when I watched it, Mick sat in on a trance reading with the Dutch lady and received very evidential information, but then found that it was all available online. That's all I meant about the reading with a lady. I had a similar reaction to the theatricals of the trance reading. I watched the last two episodes last night and it was emotionally draining. I had to make an attempt to pull myself together as I was getting close to the breaking down and bawling stage! Really excellent!
 

mac

janitor and administrator
Staff member
mac, speaking for myself, since this site is mainly meant to be for afterlife discussions by those who largely already have a belief in an afterlife, there isn't much here I can add to or participate in. I do comment in those threads and on those subjects where I feel I have something to contribute, but much of what's on this site approaches afterlife topics from the position that such a place exists, and I don't necessarily hold that view.

I know you feel that site participation has been down for quite a long time, and you may be right, but more recently I would assume that the pandemic has something to do with it.

I agree it's predicated on there being an afterlife but not with the remark it's largely for those who subscribe to that notion.

Nonetheless I do understand it's hard for anyone unpersuaded to engage very far or add much. But I'm sure you know my remark about non-involvement wasn't aimed at you. You're one of the regulars who despite her doubts does engage where she can. And I do accept folk can take whatever they choose from this website but it's very dispiriting - for me - that so few contribute anything, even in forums nothing to do with the afterlife.

I've seen no drop off in activity levels since the pandemic began. The lack of interest has hardly changed in ages.
 

mac

janitor and administrator
Staff member
It doesn't happen much here on ALF but I have seen it elsewhere on other websites. Members will grumble that there's nothing new or interesting but they don't contribute anything themselves, not even by asking a question, but want just to read what someone else spent time and effort on.

That's fine for certain websites where a small group of members form a regular core who constantly grumble about all their pet dislikes - politics and religion often favorites - and others read what they write. But ALF isn't that kind of website and its forums are there with the hope they'll encourage seekers and new members to come and join the conversations. Without new contributions the pages become stale and uninviting. Without new members joining discussions there's little anyone can do to try to support them.

Last year I bought a small book collection, indexed the pages for easy finding of topics, and got my electronic kit prepared so I could offer clips of guidance that I hoped might appeal to seekers and existing members alike. I have been able to use those resources barely a handful of times and while returning our Christmas decorations to storage in our loft - first time since 2011 they'd seen daylight - I pushed all the books and related information up there too. I doubt they'll see the light of day again 'til someone else clears the loft after I kick my clogs. They'll end up in a dumpster or recycled.

Do I sound despondent?
 
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Ruby

New Member
Aw, that's a shame, mac. You won't need to go up to the loft for this one though. I remember you saying that you had a friend who was a medium. Was this before the days of the internet? Was he successful?
 

mac

janitor and administrator
Staff member
Didn't much of what we oldies remember happen before the days of the world wide web? :D

It's hard to remember just how recently the web entered our lives because so much of what many see and do every day, almost every minute for some, happens online. But spiritual issues are less impacted although at the moment even churches are using the Zoom platform for services just as some mediums are doing.
 

mac

janitor and administrator
Staff member
Bridgerton prompted our return to Netflix today so while my wife watched the first episodes of the series I began watching a series more appropriate to my own interest.....;)

I didn't bother with the first episode at all, the one about NDEs. I started with the second which is actually the first of two about mediumship. I'm going to comment episode by episode on what I find it rather than watching them all first.

This second episode was interesting and largely reflected what I know of mediumship but I was VERY surprised how much time was devoted to physical mediumship. The commentary declared it to be uncommon nowadays but then the episode devoted a lot of time to it and to its development. Given that most seekers are unlikely to experience this form of mediumship I was very surprised so much time had been given to explaining it.

Much less time was given to healing yet that is something of huge potential benefit to sufferers. I found the imbalance very disappointing but perhaps in the next episode about mediumship that balance will be redressed.
 

bluebird

New Member
I agree it's predicated on there being an afterlife but not with the remark it's largely for those who subscribe to that notion.

Nonetheless I do understand it's hard for anyone unpersuaded to engage very far or add much. But I'm sure you know my remark about non-involvement wasn't aimed at you. You're one of the regulars who despite her doubts does engage where she can. And I do accept folk can take whatever they choose from this website but it's very dispiriting - for me - that so few contribute anything, even in forums nothing to do with the afterlife.

I've seen no drop off in activity levels since the pandemic began. The lack of interest has hardly changed in ages.

Thanks, mac. I definitely didn't take your "non-involvement" comment personally or as aimed at me; I just thought I'd offer one perspective on why participation might be down.

I am surprised to hear that the pandemic hasn't affected activity levels. I would have expected people to either stop participating because they have other things on their mind, or to increase their participation because they're stuck at home and interacting mainly online.
 

mac

janitor and administrator
Staff member
Thanks, mac. I definitely didn't take your "non-involvement" comment personally or as aimed at me; I just thought I'd offer one perspective on why participation might be down.

I am surprised to hear that the pandemic hasn't affected activity levels. I would have expected people to either stop participating because they have other things on their mind, or to increase their participation because they're stuck at home and interacting mainly online.

I thought similar concerning the last part of your last sentence and there may be folk viewing the boards but I don't see statistics for visitors - they certainly are not appearing as contributors. I did think folk might come looking for answers and guidance given the very large number of excess/additional deaths that can be attributed to the pandemic. Thus far it's not the case.

As there's been so little activity for so long then any reduction in the level would scarcely be noticeable.
 
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Ruby

New Member
Mac, I agree with you about Bridgerton! I lasted about two minutes as it was so cliche-ridden and corny! It was as if the writer had made a note of all Jane Austen tropes and crammed them together.
It's very difficult to assess physical mediumship, but I suppose there's little difference between that form and mental mediumship in that as long as the sitter receives information they doubt could have come from ordinary means, they will consider it a success. Did you have faith in the physical medium lady in the programme? They always seem to come out with a lot of platitudes, "he's watching over you" and so on. Also, the internet is a big problem nowadays. I checked that nothing was online before I went for my reading in January 2019, which was a surprise as it was very good. However, my son was on Facebook a lot (I've never been on it and know nothing about it) and I wonder if it all still exists somewhere, frozen but accessible? It would be a time-consuming trawl through a lot of rubbish and a big gamble and risk for someone to do hot readings like this though. Your reading could be based on completely the wrong person.
 

mac

janitor and administrator
Staff member
Finding information on social media sites etc. is naturally a possibility but as I've so often pointed out, psychic reading - deliberately or inadvertently - in my view is a much greater risk.

A sitter carries with her all the emotional material she'd love to hear from a spirit communicator as evidence of that communicator's identity but a practitioner may tap into that and feed it back as if it had been provided by a communicator. It can be very hard to tell at times which is which.

For me the mode of mediumship is less important than the evidence of survival it should convey. With physical mediumship I consider there's a very significant risk of being distracted by phenomena and as I remarked earlier I thought the programme I watched gave a disproportionate amount of time to physical mediumship, something more rare now than in the past and rare even then.

It's not only the practitioner who's responsible for the quality of communication. The practitioner is dependent on the communicator's ability to convey suitable evidence but a competent medium is one who does not allow herself to slip into psychic reading and that requires practice and experience - and integrity.

Something I particularly dislike is seeing a medium 'interpreting' what's coming through. I watched a sitting via Zoom recently where the medium for the evening had been getting very good pieces of information for a number of sitters. I think she was buoyed up and on a roll but then spoiled things by going too far and interpreting what she'd been given. Doing that might have spoiled its evidential value but fortunately the sitter was experienced. She listened carefully and corrected the medium's interpretation of what turned out to be highly evidential information.

That's an example of where a medium's ego appeared to have got in the way.
 

mac

janitor and administrator
Staff member
I watched the second 'mediums' part today. Somewhat different from the first.
 

mac

janitor and administrator
Staff member
Part 4 yesterday, the one about signs and symbols as messages. Thus far I've found this aspect the most interesting and thought provoking. It links well to the discussions we've had on ALF in the past and to what Mikey Morgan has told us.

I used to be sceptical but my view now is much more positive although I still have searching questions.
 

Ruby

New Member
Skeptiko has posted a long, very interesting interview with the wonderful Leslie Kean. A worthwhile listen! She didn't think that the two episodes with the mediums was the best of the series, but she didn't have editorial control and respected the work of the production company. She said that the last two episodes were more in keeping with the enquiring nature of her book, but said there was no denying the skill and power of the storytelling of the first episode and the near-death investigator later on in the series.
 

mac

janitor and administrator
Staff member
An interest in physical mediumship can be more of an interest in the phenomena found in it than in the simple message of survival - along with healing - mediumship can bring.

Frauds have been around and making claims about their supposed mediumship for as long as mediums have been recognised for what they actually do. Physical phenomena have always attracted those wanting to experience the 'spooky' side of things. Folk's desire has proved an attraction for frauds keen to relieve them of of their money by providing demonstrations of alleged mediumship. It was that way many decades ago and remains that way.

Deception and trickery was uncovered again quite recently, the well-known practitioner named but seemingly not shamed.
 

jobun

New Member
Mac, I agree with you about Bridgerton! I lasted about two minutes as it was so cliche-ridden and corny! It was as if the writer had made a note of all Jane Austen tropes and crammed them together.
Thank you for the review on this. someone recommended it to me, told me I would love it. I don't do netflix so for me to waste time with that would have ticked me off a little.
 
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