Saturday, December 29, 2012

Armageddon Outta Here! How to Make Every Day Your Personal Doomsday

If you're reading this, as one blogger put it, you know the world didn't end on December 21, 2012, despite claims that a medieval Mayan calendar predicted it. But you may not know that a Mayan temple had a small apocalypse of its own during the abortive Doomsday, thanks to some of the tourists who streamed into Guatemala for “end of the world” parties. They ignored rules and climbed the stairs of Temple II, doing unspecified “irreparable” damage, a technical adviser to the site told the media.

Elsewhere, Argentina closed off access to sacred Mount Uritorco after a Facebook-posted appeal for doomsday believers to climb the mountain and commit “mass spiritual suicide,” Agence France Presse reported.

Error has been the one common thread running through millenialist movements that have broken out in just about every generation. In our culture, many of them have revolved around the Christian Second Coming of Christ. Part of the reason is mostly vague Bible prophecies which have been ingeniously interpreted to fit each generation's situation.

Even Christ himself is allegedly ambiguously quoted about when and how the Second Coming should take place. In the Gospel of Mark's Chapter 13, in the opinion of some, he is quoted as saying that the end time would be a physical doomsday and would come in the life time of his contemporary followers. Indeed, the earliest Christians assumed Christ would be back in their lifetimes. This was one of the reasons for the lag time between Christ's crucifixion in the 30s A.D. and the circulation of the first Christian writings a generation later.

On the other hand, the Gospel of Luke, others claim, quotes Christ in one place as instructing the Pharisees that the Second Coming would be symbolic, not literal and physical – that is, an inner, spiritual revolution of higher consciousness, not a concrete Armageddon. “The Kingdom of God does not come in such a way as to be seen,”  Jesus said. “No one will say, 'Look, here it is!' or 'There it is;' Because the Kingdom of God is within you.”

Since Christ's day, there have been countless passionate but failed end-of-the-world movements:

In 988, The Christian world supposedly took it as a terrible omen when a wolf entered the cathedral at Orleans, France, and seized a bell rope in its mouth to supposedly ring out the death toll of the world as the first millennium wound down. Thousands of psalm-singing pilgrims made for the Holy Land in preparation for the end in 999.

In 1179, the astrologer John of Toledo said the end would come in 1186 when all the then-known planets gathered in the constellation Libra. There was an uproar all over Eurasia. The Byzantine emperor ordered his palace windows shuttered.

In 1524, more than 20,000 Londoners fled their city for higher elevations after astrologers predicted that doomsday would begin on Feb. 1 with a flood of London.

One of the strangest apocalyptic movements centered around Sabbatai Zevi, a Jew who convinced thousands of his fellow Jews in the Mediterranean world that the end was coming in 1666 and that he was their Messiah. Commerce slowed as Jewish merchants lost interest in trade. Zevi led a band of followers in a march on the capital of the Turkish Empire to begin his apocalyptic rule. But instead, Zevi was arrested by the Turks. The shrewd, ruling sultan was careful to spare Zevi and deny him any martyrdom. Instead, the sultan ingeniously managed to convert Zevi to Islam, and Zevi's movement fizzled out.

In the early 1800s, after poring over the Bible, New York's William Miller, a stammering self-taught Protestant, became convinced that Doomsday was coming sometime around 1843. A spectacular meteor shower in 1833 helped his cause along. Miller eventually pegged Oct. 22, 1844 as a doomsday date. Millerites, some in white robes, waited by the thousands on New England hilltops to be lifted to heaven. One man, wearing turkey wings, tried to fly from a tree but fell and broke an arm.

On that exciting day, a Millerite spotted an unflustered Ralph Waldo Emerson, the great philosopher, and a companion of Emerson's taking a casual stroll. Asked by the Millerite if they knew the end was coming, Emerson's companion noted: “It doesn't much concern me. I live in Boston.” Emerson chimed in: “The end of the world doesn't bother me. I can get along without it.” The Millerites wept when nothing happened, and called it “The Disappointment.”

Just a couple of generations ago, Indian astrologers proclaimed that a particular conjunction of eight planets in the sky spelled doom for the earth on Feb. 2, 1962. Millions prayed. In one rite, more than a ton of butter and thousands of flowers were sacrificed. 250 priests started a relay to repeat Hindu liturgy 4.8 million times.

But I'd say author Og Mandino had a better idea for handling Doomsday than donning turkey wings or marching on Istanbul:

"Live this day as if it will be your last. Remember that you will only find 'tomorrow' on the calendars of fools. Forget yesterday's defeats and ignore the problems of tomorrow. This is it. Doomsday. All you have. Make it the best day of your year. The saddest words you can ever utter are, "If I had my life to live over again." Take the baton now. Run with it! This is your day! Beginning today, treat everyone you meet, friend or foe, loved one or stranger, as if they were going to be dead at midnight. Extend to each person, no matter how trivial the contact, all the care and kindness and understanding and love that you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward. Your life will never be the same again."

A good formula for a Happy New Year.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Dave Schrader and Tim Dennis were energetic radio hosts who stirred up quite a Christmas season discussion with me Dec. 11 on the subject of angels on Minneapolis-St. Paul's news-talk station KTCN-AM. The near-death experience, the angel as a being of light, departed loved ones looking after us, meaningful coincidences, and a host of others topics were touched on -- interspersed by a series of interesting callers. Follow the links below to hear the first and second hours of the show.

Angels in Our Life, Part 1

Angelology, Part 2

Monday, October 22, 2012

Why do angels save some, but not others? Can near-death experiences be negative? These and other questions are explored in a wide-ranging interview on the nationally syndicated Dreamland show

Why do angels save some, but not others? Are all spiritual communications from the other side helpful, or could some be harmful? Are near-death experiences always positive and upbeat, or do negative NDEs occur, too? Do angels sometimes disguise themselves as mortals to do their work? These are a few of the dozens of questions covered in a wide-ranging interview I had on the legendary radio host Art Bell's nationally syndicated talk show Dreamland.

At the time I interviewed with Art for this broadcast years ago, his syndication had grown in one year from around 40 stations to about 120, a tripling. Today, his legacy, the late night paranormal show Coast to Coast A.M., on which I've had the privilege to appear several times over the years, is broadcast by more than 500 affiliates from Guam in the South Pacific, through the U.S. and Canada, and even in the Virgin Islands.

As you will hear in this Dreamland segment which just recently surfaced again on YouTube, Art is masterful at maintaining a lively pace and bringing out the best in a guest.

Click here to listen to the show.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Was that Pooch an Angel?

Was that pooch an angel? A good question to ask today, during the Feast of Saint Roch, who was once helped by an angel taking the form of a dog.

This Italian saint of the 1300s caught the plague while nursing the sick during an outbreak -- a time when doctors often ran away from the filthy germ-ridden medieval cities along with panicked citizens. At that critical point, the story goes, an angel took the form of a dog and licked a plague sore on Roch's thigh. 

However, in other stories like this one, the animal helper is not a disguised angel but just inspired by a higher power to assist -- as when the out-of-favor Hebrew prophet Elijah flees to the desert and is fed by ravens. 

Both explanations crop up in modern tales, such as women facing would-be attackers -- who are suddenly escorted by a guard dog out of nowhere, shadowing them until they reach safety, then disappearing. 

In fact, a third explanation for animal altruism also is made: Sometimes, it seems that the animal itself in spirit form may have returned to the physical world. During a radio interview in the early 1990s in Seattle, a paramedic told me that he was led to a wrecked car where a driver lay trapped -- led there by a yellow lab whose dead body was later found in the vehicle's rear seat. Thanks to the dog, its master was rescued.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The strange link between Abraham Lincoln and John Kennedy – “Twins of Fate” bound together in one of history’s greatest coincidences

“There have been coincidences so dramatic, so symbolic or so wildly improbable that they have aroused feelings of the uncanny in scientists and layman alike for generations,” Robert Anton Wilson once noted.

Carl Jung, the “other giant” of 20th Century psychiatry after Freud, argued that these mind-boggling coincidences aren’t always just random quirks, or mere accidents in the statistics. 

Consider this:

At 7:27 p.m., March 1, 1950, just three minutes before choir practice, a massive natural gas explosion blew to bits the West Side Baptist Church in Beatrice, Nebraska. But nobody was there. Over the next half hour, though, 17 persons showed up late, all for difference minor reasons – something that had never happened before, nor has ever happened since, in the century-old history of the church.

Are meaningful coincidences the work of angels? God acting behind-the-scenes? Or are we unknowingly, on a subconscious level, setting up these twists of fate? (In other words, were the West Side Baptist Church choristers psychically aware, on a subconscious level, that the explosion was coming?)

Jung said there may be a third explanation: that meaningful coincidences can sometimes be created by a force of nature, which he called “synchronicity.” Like gravity, the force of synchronicity pulls things together because they have a common meaning, even if there is no logical reason for them to be together. Like the crazy elements of a dream that make no sense being together until you start analyzing them for their symbolic meaning.

Whatever the cause, perhaps one of the most astonishing examples of synchronicity has been the strange link between the presidencies of Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy, which became noticed after Kennedy’s assassination in 1963.

Lincoln and Kennedy were in the White House a century apart. Yet these two “twins of fate” have been linked by a chain of weird coincidences in dates, names, circumstances and numbers. Strangely, the death of Lincoln seems to some to have predicted the death of Kennedy.

Consider first these coincidences in dates:
  • Kennedy and Lincoln were elected President exactly a century apart in 1860 and 1960.
  • Lincoln had previously been elected to Congress in 1847; Kennedy in 1947.
  • Lincoln’s vice president was born in 1808; Kennedy’s vice president was bom in 1908.
  • Lincoln’s assassin was bom in 1839; Kennedy’s assassin was horn in 1939.
Secondly, here are some coincidences involving circumstances and names:
  • Kennedy and Lincoln were well-loved northerners. Each went on to inspire the world. Kennedy and Lincoln were both known for their civil rights advocacy during a time of sectional tension among northern and southem states over how African-Americans should be treated. Both were over six feet tall and had been in the military.
  • The draft riots during the Civil War-era 1860s were paralleled by the draft resistors during the Vietnam War-era 1960s.
  • Both Kennedy and Lincoln had vice presidents named Johnson, who were southern Democrats and former senators.
  • Kennedy and Lincoln each had a son die while residing at the White House.
  • Lincoln and Kennedy were both killed on a Friday. Each President was shot in the back of the head as he sat beside his wife.
  • Lincoln was shot in a theater, and his assassin fled to a warehouse. Kennedy was shot by an assassin firing from a warehouse, who then fled to a theater.
  • Lincoln was shot in Ford’s Theater. Kennedy was shot in a moving Ford convertible. The particular Ford model was a Lincoln.
  • Lincoln’s assassin, John Wilkes Booth, and Kennedy’s assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, were both known by three-part names and both were southerners. Both assassins were murdered by gunfire while in the custody of their captors, never making it to a trial. Booth’s murderer, Boston Corbett, was eventually declared insane, while Oswald’s murderer, Jack Ruby, claimed insanity as a defense. Booth had been part of a conspiracy; Oswald was under suspicion of having been part of a conspiracy.
  • Kennedy’s private secretary, a person named Lincoln, warned him not to go to Dallas; Lincoln’s secretary, whose first name was John, warned him against going to Ford’s Theater.
  • In 1858, the Cincinnati Gazette published a letter to the editor, which made the first public proposal that Lincoln should become the Republican nominee for President in 1860. The letter also suggested that a good vice presidential running mate for Lincoln would be a former secretary of the navy, who was named John Kennedy.

Finally, consider these coincidences involving numbers:
  • The names Kennedy and Lincoln each contain seven letters as do the matching last names of their vice presidents, Lyndon Johnson and Andrew Johnson.

  • The names John Wilkes Booth and Lee Harvey Oswald contain 15 letters apiece.
  • Andrew Johnson and Lyndon Johnson were succeeded by Ulysses Simpson Grant and Richard Milhous Nixon, each name containing seven, seven and five letters, respectively.
Kennedy and Lincoln also shared another extraordinary link, a personal sense of their approaching untimely deaths. In both cases, a host of fatal premonitions from many directions confirmed their ominous personal feelings. And in both cases, when the time for their assassinations was ripe, the deadly processes were strangely facilitated by coincidences.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

A different kind of war story for Memorial Day: A newlywed Texas woman reportedly becomes a guardian angel to her young husband during the Vietnam War

In 1970, collegian Jack Wheeler had just married a beautiful Texas coed named Delores when he found out his draft lottery number was four – a grim jackpot whose prize was Nam. Yet, in some strange way, Delores never seemed to leave his side – appearing in ghostly form time and again to save his life on the battlefield. In 1971, near the DMZ, Jack half-awoke to see Delores urging him to flee his cot – just seconds before an explosion that obliterated his “hooch” (hut). Fully awakened by the blast, Jack now realized that his pet dog Midnight had pulled him away from his bed – but had the pooch had help? Later, on a helicopter flight, Jack saw a jungle island below him strangely forming itself into the image of Delores’s face and saying, “Don’t worry, Jack. I’m here to protect you.” As he heard those words, a letter from Delores fell to the chopper floor, and when he went to reach for it, a wind gust blew it farther away. Just as Jack left his seat to retrieve the letter, a series of enemy rounds ripped through the same seat, the bullets grazing his legs. The crippled chopper plummeted, and when Jack regained consciousness, he saw the copter precariously perched on a treetop 50 feet above “Delores Island,” and he heard her say, “I’m here to protect you.” At that moment, the copter plunged from the tree and slammed the ground. Jack blacked out. He found himself in a near-death experience, rushing down a spectacularly colored tunnel, mesmerized by white light and becoming more and more ecstatic as he moved along. But an etheric half-figure of Delores blocked him suddenly: “Don’t leave me. I want you to come home – to have children with you. If you don’t stop, you’ll never see me again. You’ll lose me!” Jack rested himself in her bosom. She held the battle-weary GI like a child in her arms as she led him back out of the tunnel. When Jack regained consciousness, all of Delores’ seven letters that he had been carrying on the chopper were now with him in the hospital – including one letter that had blown out of the chopper just before it had been hit by gunfire. On October 28, 1972, after these and other spiritual interventions, 23-year-old Jack Wheeler went home to his young wife, who was unaware of those life-saving incidents a half world away. The full story appears in the book The Angel Library.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

The Angel Library: Free for Two Days on Amazon

The Angel Library, a recently published e-book collection of three of my most popular angel books with more than 140,000 copies in print in paper editions, will be available for a free download from for two days this week, Wednesday May 9 and Thursday May 10. Use Amazon's free Kindle software to read it on your smartphone, tablet, PC or Kindle. Since the 1980s, these  books have been featured nationally on The Learning Channel, Sightings, NBC's Angels II, The Phil Donahue Show, Coast to Coast A.M., and on scores of regional and local TV and radio shows. Please share this post with anyone who might be interested. Thanks for your support!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Prophecies Surrounding the Sinking of the Titanic


Perhaps the one event which has most astonishingly demonstrated the reality of prophecy is the sinking of the ocean liner Titanic, which struck an iceberg off Canada's coast on April 15, 1912.

With the disaster's 100th anniversary coming up tomorrow, consider these incredible facts, among many others, cited in the book Prophecies Surrounding the Titanic (

  • The British journalist W. T. Stead (pictured above), doomed to die on the Titanic, seemed his entire life long to display an unconscious knowledge of his date with destiny in his writing, speech-giving and behavior. As just one example, he wrote an 1892 short story that eerily described the watery demise he would face exactly 20 years later.

  • In 1898, ex-sailor Morgan Robertson went into a trance and wrote a "fictional" literary story, The Wreck of the Titan. In amazing detail, the story turned out ot be an unintended script for the events of the disaster, down to the number of passengers, tonnage of the ship, shortage of lifeboats, and many other small details.

  • Typical of the numerous strange "concidences" piling up just before the catastrophe: Two hours before the iceberg crash, singing Titanic crew members inexplicably selected the hymn, Hear, Father, While We Pray to Thee, For Those in Peril in the Sea. Thousands of miles away, at that moment, the same hymn was being sung by a congregation in Winnipeg, Canada. Its minister, Charles Morgan had earlier selected the hymn for his flock after hearing the title and vividly seeing the hymn number while in a trance-like state. Although he had never sung the hymn before, he was able to locate the music in his library and include it in his church service that night.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

A Question for Valentine’s Day: How do Angels Make Love?

As St. Valentine’s Day draws near, one wonders what would happen if one of those angelic cherub archers were to shoot an arrow into an angel’s heart. Do angels make love? And if so, how?

In fact, the blind Puritan poet John Milton had Adam asking this potentially touchy question of his mentor, the archangel Gabriel, in the Garden of Eden. In the poem Paradise Lost, Gabriel blushed and smiled before explaining the angelic facts of life over supper to the innocent legendary first man and woman. “Easier than air with air, if spirits embrace, / Total they mix, union of pure with pure / Desiring,” Milton wrote. Was Milton saying that angels are making whoopee? The famous British Christian writer C. S. Lewis didn’t think so, according to philosophy professor Geddes MacGregor.  Lewis suggested that Milton’s angels were not being sexually lustful when they intermingled their airy essences. Rather, their lovemaking was a complete spiritual bonding that transcended sexuality. MacGregor quoted Lewis as saying that an angelic act of love is “the satisfaction of love itself, not of appetite.” In his book Angels: Ministers of Grace, MacGregor went on to say that mature humans also have the ability to “engage in a spiritual fusion where spirit and spirit entwine in a love which, rooted though it is in sexuality, leaps beyond into a realm unimpeded by our kind of corporeality.”

The subject of angel love-making brings up another question: do angels even have gender? As a matter of fact, in traditional Judeo-Christian theology, the prevailing viewpoint has been that angels are not split into males and females. Rather, medieval philosophers usually thought of angels as sexless – or in their phrasing “androgynous.” In other words, a perfect combination of male and female sexuality.

This idea probably arose because of a comment attributed to Jesus when he was asked about marriage in heaven. Jesus replied in the gospels that the dead do not marry, because they act “like the angels.”

To symbolize this total blending of maleness and femaleness in an angel, artists have often portrayed angels as effeminate men. Other artists have shown angels as exclusively female, since females are identified with the cosmos’s nurturing, mystical and intuitive side, what the Taoists call the “yin” or “female” principle in nature. This principle stands in opposition to the “yang” or male side of the universe, which represents the rational, physical world.  No wonder then that angels are rarely shown in art as rugged he-men.

In the final analysis, maybe the English Romantic poet William Wordsworth makes the safest observation: “What know we of the Blest Above, but that they sing, and that they love?”

Love, the cement of the universe and often compared to gravity in physics, shatters the illusion of separateness, so that we can feel the warm Unity that hides behind the outer world of differences. Like white light broken into colors by a prism, love transmutes into a spectrum of related sub-emotions such as compassion, empathy and pity.

What we do know is that the higher that humans evolve, the more spiritually loving they seem to become. And, in fact, advanced spiritual “beings of light” reportedly encountered by dying mortals in their near-death experiences are routinely described as overwhelmingly loving and compassionate. Mystics and saints through the ages have provided similar accounts in reporting their visions of angels.