Some may argue that mediumship and spiritism are a thing of the past. Mostly experienced and reported to have taken place in the late 19th and early 20th century. With great names like Lesley Flint who specialised in the phenomenon of the direct voice. And who has ever seen real ectoplasm coming from the ear of some medium? Surely that is a thing of the Golden Era when peolpe like Blavatsky, Aleister Crowley and of course Dion Fortune were active. Or is it?
This presentation will be an exploration of contemporary trance and physical mediumship at a private spiritualist home-circle called the Bristol Spirit Lodge, which formed the basis of dr. Jack Hunter’s doctoral research. Located in a garden on the outskirts of Bristol, the Lodge is a wooden shed specially constructed for the purposes of mediumship development and spirit communication. Through a combination of ethnographic observations in séances, including his own experiences of mediumship development, and interviews with spirits and their mediums, this research revealed a sub-urban world of trance states, ectoplasm, spirit lights and discarnate entities. Issues relating to altered states of consciousness, personhood, performance and the efficacy of ritual are examined in order to make sense of the processes by which spirits become manifest in social reality.
Examples of direct mediumship
Here are some examples of direct mediumship in the 20th century.
First a direct voice recording of Mahatma Ghandi coming through the London based medium Leslie Flint, recorded by researcher George Woods:
Here is an picture of Leslie Flint at work. A trumpetlike shape (larynx) of ectoplasm comes from his mouth. Out of the trumpet sounds the direct voice of, for example, Ghandi.
Here is another example of ectoplasm coming from the body of a medium, in this case from the nose.
Jack Hunter, PhD., is an anthropologist exploring the borderlands of consciousness, religion, ecology and the paranormal. He is an Honorary Research Fellow with the Alister Hardy Religious Experience Research Centre, and a tutor with the Sophia Centre for the Study of Cosmology in Culture, University of Wales, Trinity Saint David. There, Jack is lead tutor on the MA in Ecology and Spirituality and teaches on the MA in Cultural Astronomy and Astrology. He is also a lecturer on the Alef Trust’s MSc in Consciousness, Spirituality and Transpersonal Psychology. He is a Research Fellow with the Parapsychology Foundation, and a Professional Member of the Parapsychological Association. Jack currently sits on the board of directors of the Association for the Anthropology of Consciousness. In 2010 he founded Paranthropology: Journal of Anthropological Approaches to the Paranormal. He is the author of Spirits, Gods and Magic (2020) and Manifesting Spirits (2020), and is the editor of Mattering the Invisible (2020), Greening the Paranormal (2019), Damned Facts (2016) and Talking with the Spirits (2014). Jack lives in the hills of Mid-Wales with his family.
His website can be found at jack-hunter.webstarts.com
7.40 pm CET: zoom meeting opens
8.00 pm CET: start
9.30 pm CET: questions
10.00 pm CET: zoom meeting ends
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