Allure of the Seal

The world of the fae has always had the most important place in my heart. There are so many wonderful tales and poetry inspired by these magical beings. I’ve spent my life learning about them, and one of my favorite tales is about the Selchie or Selkie. For some reason they have always drawn me in and sent a warm light through my entire body.

There are different versions of the story, but in summary, the Scottish tale tells of a fisherman/hunter that comes across some beautiful women dancing on the shore. He’s mesmerized by their beauty, and then sees the seal skins on rocks near them.  If you steal the seal skin of a Selchie she cannot return to the sea, so he takes it and makes one of the beautiful ladies wed him. Eventually, she learns to love the hunter and bears a child. As the boy grows he sees how sad his mother is when she gazes out to the sea, and she explains why.  Eventually he steals the skin back for his mother and she is able to return to the sea….This is definitely just a summary and I fully recommend reading the whole thing. I’ll leave a link to a version of the full story at the bottom of the page.

Something here just really tugs at my heart. According to The Faery Bible, “The sea represents emotions, but these are not just personal emotions and ordinary human bonds. The sea signifies the longing of humanity – all the memories and feelings of the ages that are too overwhelming, too deep ever to be cast aside by a being as sensitive as the Selkie. She belongs to the collective emotional pool and she must dance the dance of life – she has far more to experience than simply the domestic joys of marriage and motherhood. For us, the Selkie represents the longing of the soul for it’s true home…”


Art by: Selina Fenech

There is such a beautiful sadness to the story, that I think that we can relate to as humans. At some point I think many of us have been forced to give up an important aspect of our personality when we didn’t want to. Growing up, in a sense, feels like our skins being stolen. We adjust to life and responsibility we’d rather not have, but sometimes gaze back longingly at a time when it felt like the world was ours. Our souls are always longing for something more.  Maybe it’s delusion but ever since I can remember consciousness I have always felt that my soul was far away from it’s true home in the sea. Domestication is a sickness that has always terrified me, and I wish nothing more than to be as free as a Selchie swimming in the sea. Able to survive in water and on land. Maybe in the next life, right?

As a general rule one should NEVER try and capture and control the magick of a faery being. Always respect the earth and the gifts it gives us. Work in tandem with it, and all of the magick that it holds.   And if you see a Selchie, watch from a distance and never, ever steal their skins.


https://www.uexpress.com/tell-me-a-story/1999/11/28/the-selkie-bride-a-scottish-legend


The Dreaded Red Circle

This is a short one, and it may ruffle a few feathers, but I’m going to address the dreaded red circle. I see so many pictures that people post of a grainy black room…with a circle or two placed where they see “faces” or “figures” or the “ghost of Marilyn Monroe” and it’s so hard to take them seriously.

Sure, maybe you do see the faces there! The human mind tries to make sense of what it sees. It wants to organize things into shapes and patterns. This is called pareidolia. The definition according to Webster’s Dictionary is “The tendency to perceive a specific, often meaningful image in a random or ambiguous visual pattern.” So, looking at clouds, inkblot tests…or staring at a grainy picture of a dark room often lead to pareidolia. There are also plenty of other explanations…reflections, dust, bugs, camera glitches etc. Not to say that there aren’t paranormal things caught on camera or film, but it’s alarming how many people jump straight to “IT’S A GHOST!!”

I remember growing up I was terrified of the paranormal happenings I experienced, but would also often scare myself. I’d lay in my bed and stare into the doorway and if I stared long and hard enough I could start to see shapes or figures in the darkness. Try it. Try turning off all the lights and staring into a corner or a doorway and you’ll see what I mean.

People using this as “evidence” always hurts a little, because people already don’t take the paranormal community seriously.  Believe me, I understand that it’s so hard to prove that spirits exist. You know what you see and experience and you can’t always prove that to others…but the red circle really is not the way to go about proving that we’re not all a bunch of crazies.  

Here are few examples of pareidolia I pulled from the internet.

Credit: Spooky Marion
Credit:
New Zealand Strange Occurrences Society

At the end of the day, if you have to draw a circle around something in a photo, it’s probably not anything. Please, please stop sharing these photos as actual evidence. Always try and debunk things and find rational explanations. It’s so important for what we do, and for the answers that we are seeking.

Stay vigilant. Stay educated. Stay aware.

E-mail me at paranormalprincess7@gmail.com if you have any questions or points of discussion.

xo



Satan And The Hellfire Club

History is absolutely fascinating…especially Irish history! When I was in Ireland last year I had the most incredible 10 days of my life. During my solo journey I spent a couple days in Dublin and of course had to hop on a tour of the Hellfire Club! (No, this was not the same one that Ghost Adventures investigated).  The double decker bus was super spooky and a ton of fun. The bus ride was about 45 minutes but the guide kept us entertained with much of the & legends.

The building from the outside!!
  • The club was founded in 1735 by Richard Parsons, a known dabbler in black magic.
  • Dublin’s Hellfire Club was a place for wealthy young gentlemen to drink, gamble, hire prostitutes, even, allegedly, engage in Satanic worship.
  • The best-known Hellfire club story is the one in which the Devil himself appears. A stranger had joined the members at a game of cards. At some point one of the card players dropped a card on the floor. As he bent down to retrieve it he noticed that the stranger had cloven hooves instead of feet.
  • Another tale concerns a young farmer, curious to find out what went on at the meetings. Climbing up Montpelier Hill one night, he was invited in by the members of the club and allowed to witness the night’s activities. He was found the next morning trembling and terrified. Tradition says he spent the rest of his life unable to speak; unable even to remember his name.

Now, it’s hard to say if some of the old tradition is accurate, but during times of strong religious rule there were most certainly rebels that practiced Satanic magick, and/or other extremes. It’s also interesting to note that there are stories from many different traditions that talk about “someone” showing up with hoofed feet or chicken legs. It seems to be a telltale sign of the Devil, so who knows, maybe there is a grain of truth to the stories out there. I like to think there is ;). A friend of my grandmother swears she saw a man with chicken legs when she was out dancing one night and spent much of her life in fear that he would return to find her since she laid eyes on him.

The hike up to the structure was absolutely stunning, green & perfectly warm. I didn’t feel strange or any sense of dread, but I was also just happy to be in the place I always felt was my home. Ireland is just so incredible! During my actual time in the structure I did feel a little off, though. Unfortunately over time people have graffitied it and caused damage. There was definitely an eerie vibe that wasn’t just due to the building’s age. We were allowed to walk around and explore, so of course I did! A couple of areas caused me to become overwhelmed with unexplained anxiety…I wish more than anything I’d been able to sit down and center myself to see what I could feel around there as I do believe the place to be haunted…by what, I do not know.

Who was wandering these halls 200 years ago??

May I add the absolute scariest part of the place was the giant spiders.

Some friends I’ve made in the paranormal community recently did an investigation there! I’ve included a link to their Facebook below.

https://www.facebook.com/eire19/
https://dublin.ie/living/articles/the-hell-fire-club/

xo

The Archaeologist Who Was Sat On By A Ghost

So, life has been a little crazy! I was in Los Angeles last weekend to see my favorite crazy Russian rave band, so I’m sorry for the lack of recent content.

I was also a guest on PIOT Paranormal’s podcast! I’ll include a link when it comes out 🙂

Anyways, I’ve been reading Ghost & Ghoul by T.C. Lethbridge. It’s a small book but it has some extremely valuable information & theories in it. He had a brilliant mind, and saw things from a more scientific perspective. I’d love to hear what he would say about the new spirit science technologies that we have today.

“Thomas Charles Lethbridge (23 March 1901 – 30 September 1971), better known as T. C. Lethbridge, was an English archaeologist, parapsychologist, and explorer. A specialist in Anglo-Saxon archaeology, he served as honorary Keeper of Anglo-Saxon Antiquities at the Cambridge University Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology from 1923 to 1957, and over the course of his lifetime wrote twenty-four books on various subjects, becoming particularly well known for his advocacy of dowsing.”

In this post I’m going to present one theory he discusses that I find to be a very interesting idea of where spirits come from. I’m not saying that I think this is THE answer, but it’s extremely important to consider all theories.

So, reading this, is it possible that we are projecting our own mental images to those people who may be receivers? It’s definitely possible. There are many people who have psychic/medium abilities who claim to be able to touch an object or sometimes a person and get direct mental images in their heads. What Lethbridge is saying is sort of the same idea, except that maybe we aren’t consciously doing it. In this section of the book, he is writing about sitting down to dinner with two people. One of them had just had his wife pass, and was very overcome with grief. During the meal Lethbridge was sitting in the deceased wife’s spot at the table, and says he was “suddenly sat on and enclosed by someone I could not see”. In theory, the grieving widow was thinking intently about his dead wife and projected this onto Lethbridge’s receiving set.  Since he was also sitting in her spot, maybe the husband wishing it was his wife there instead.

My first thought was wouldn’t this happen all the time then? Wouldn’t we all be projecting images of our deceased loved ones for others to see? But no, I don’t think it’s that simple at all. Extreme emotions (like the grief of losing a loved one) play a large part in a lot of paranormal happenings and psychokinesis incidents. There’s also the perfect storm kind of effect to consider. The emotions were so focused and so strong near the receiver that they could have possibly had the physical projection of being sat on. Maybe Lethbridge is more sensitive to receiving than others and in the moment the perfect storm occurred. Maybe if it had been someone else sitting at the edge of the table this wouldn’t have happened. It goes hand in hand with the question of why do some people experience paranormal happenings and others don’t? Some would say because we are crazy or mentally ill, which is a lot of bullcrap. Of course there are some crazies out there but so many of the people I’ve talked to about their experiences are absolutely not crazy. I don’t have all the answers but I think we all have the potential to be open or to be “receivers”. Some are just born with a more natural ability while others must work harder at it. Kind of like those who are naturally inclined to play music and can pick up any instrument and figure it out, while others (like me) must work extra hard to get even the basics.

After mulling this around for awhile, I strongly agree with Lethbridge that this could be an explanation to some paranormal happenings. Most definitely not all, though.  I’m excited to finish reading the rest of this wonderful little book and hopefully will have more to share soon.

xoxoxoxo

https://www.amazon.com/Ghost-Ghoul-T-C-Lethbridge/dp/B0000CNLZK

Haunted Vegas! Part 2: The Pioneer Saloon

I was only in Vegas for a short while so I didn’t get to visit as many places as I would have liked, but the second place on my list was the Pioneer Saloon!
Thursday, before I had to go to the airport, I made the 45 minute drive from Summerlin to Goodsprings, NV. It’s crazy how you go from the city to gorgeous desert views so quickly!

The Pioneer Saloon has been featured in one of the Ghost Adventures episodes, so of course I was excited to go and spend some time there.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the history of this place this is from their website:

“Many movies have been filmed here but the genuine stories of the Pioneer Saloon do not live in the lines of a movie script but in the echoes of the past. The famous screen legend, Clark Gable, waited for three days at the bar for word on his wife of less than two years Carole Lombard. She was lost in a plane crash near Mount Potosi. You will be able to read this tragic story on an original newspaper and see a piece of the actual wreckage. At one time the saloon was next to a hotel that not only served as a comfortable rest place for the many prospectors and miners in the west… it also served as a place where street girls would frequent with their clients. The hotel is gone now after a severe fire left only ashes to remember.The many tales from the bar along with bullet holes, the pot bellied stove and the paper clippings are just a few of the things that will keep you immersed in the exciting era of the old Wild West.”

My view when I arrived!

Also here are a few more ghostly facts:

  • It’s possible that multiple people died in the old mineshaft that runs beneath the bar.
  • Supposedly remnants of the plane that killed Carole Lombard can still be found around the desert.
  • There is also the story of a drunk miner named of Paul Coski who was shot after he was caught cheating at a card game in 1915.
  • Rumors that there may be spirits of the “ladies of the night.”
The Memorial Room

I decided to stop in and have one drink (which was the best Gin & and Tonic I’ve ever had!).  The bartender & who I’m assuming was the manager were both very friendly. I asked them about their own experiences at the place and they said they always work during the day, so they haven’t had many. They said that plenty of other employees do, though!  I was also told that Zak Bagans was pretty overcome with intense emotions, off camera, while the crew was there.

It was hard for me to pick up on any energies because they were fairly busy and I was exhausted, but I love the atmosphere, the people & can’t wait to come back one day!!!

Out back. Would love to sit out here at night with the fire!

http://www.pioneersaloon.info/

Haunted Vegas! Part 1: Zak Bagan’s Museum

Recently I was out in Nevada for some personal reasons, but couldn’t let the opportunity to check out some haunted locations pass me by…

My first stop was, of course, Zak Bagan’s Haunted Museum! I’ve been there before, but I could visit every week and never get tired of it. I won’t give away too many spoilers here, but I’ll talk about a couple of the well known objects and my overall experience.

I was traveling alone and got super lucky! There’s always a pretty long wait. People come from all over the country, so even on a Wednesday afternoon there was a 2+ hour wait.  After about 15 minutes they needed a single person to join a group about to go in. I was the only person so of course I practically stampeded to the front! When you enter into the ticket area, there is one room where pictures can be taken so of course I snapped a few. I really like the fact that people can’t record or take pictures inside…and the two times I’ve been people seemed to be really respectful of that rule.

Again, I don’t want to ruin the experience for anyone, so don’t read more if you don’t want to know! One of my favorite exhibits is Peggy the Doll. There is a spirit box that runs during the tours (I’m not sure if they leave it on at night). Since I’d been once before last year, when we entered the room I had the fleeting thought “I wonder if Peggy remembers me!” And then she said my name over the spirit box, which was pretty stunning.  Part of me really wants to hold her. It’s a strange feeling…

Peggy the Doll supposedly has a spirit attached to her that causes people to become sick in her presence. One woman even had a heart attack. Personally, I didn’t feel sick or anything, but that could be because they keep her in a case and I would assume Zak had it blessed….but it was pretty crazy to hear her say my name clear as day!! She can supposedly affect people’s dreams as well. Not sure if I think it’s “demonic”, though. I’ll leave a link to an interesting article at the end.

Peggy the Doll

There’s also tons of amazing dolls, human bones, serial killer artifacts, clowns…and anything that probably scared you as a kid.  I definitely recommend this destination for any paranormal enthusiast…and even for people that may not be super enthusiasts. It’s a lot of fun and the tour guides are all fantastic as well! I hope that I can work there someday. I think I’d fit in pretty perfectly.

One last interesting note…activity started to pick up around my apartment as soon as I got back into Denver…did something perhaps follow me?

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-3043392/Video-haunted-doll-causes-EIGHTY-viewers-reportedly-suffer-chest-pains-nausea-crippling-headaches.html

Part 2 (My stop at the haunted Pioneer Saloon) coming soon!

Part 1: Ouija Boards

Recently, some of my good friends and I were talking about paranormal investigations and they asked if I ever use a Ouija board. I immediately said HELL NO.  I’ve always had a thing against them. A big part of that is due to a story my mom told me when I was young. Her and my grandmother were playing with one and it spelled out “Kelly is easy to work through”. My grandma took the board, threw it in the garbage outside and told my mom to never touch one again.  She’s instilled this in me as well and I’ve never used one. So, my friend then asked me how it’s any different than using other paranormal investigation equipment and I was at a loss. In my mind, it’s always been way different, but is it really? Whether I’m using a K2 or a Ouija board, I’m still attempting communication with something unknown.

A few fun facts about the Ouija board:

  • In 1891 the first advertisements started to appear in the papers.
  • Spiritualism began to gain a massive following in the mid to late 1800s (and beyond).  Seances & contacting the dead became very popular social events. I may discuss this movement later!
  • There is supposedly a demon named Zozo that communicates with people through the board and then wreaks havok on the user’s lives.
  • Sold & marketed as a children’s toy.

Let me say that most of the time I believe that nothing comes through. Other times, when you put a bunch of people together who are looking for a scare, subconsciously the planchette is probably being moved by the group. Occasionally you may get a spirit coming through, which could be good or not-so-good. There are even theories that it is a person’s subconscious answering questions that they already know. A way for the conscious and subconscious to communicate. I kind of like that idea.  I know I’ve had plenty of experiences where deep down I knew an answer but I still sought the validation. Maybe that’s all the Ouija board does? Maybe it’s just an oracle game like “Magic 8 Ball”? Maybe, but I’m not so sure.

When I met with my spiritual mentor I asked her opinion on the subject.  She told me one of the biggest issues is that the “ceremony” isn’t properly executed.  There are certain ways to open and close the sessions of a Ouija board, as well as other spiritual precautions one should take. Kids & teenagers especially are more reckless and unaware of these precautions.

So, you’ve played with one once and nothing happened, right? Plenty of people play with Ouija boards without consequences…probably more often than not. I guess the best comparison I can make is that people speed while they drive all the time and nothing happens. But all it takes is that one time speeding  by the cop at the wrong time that you get busted. Calling on anything can be dangerous. The use of ANY equipment can be dangerous, really. As paranormal investigators we take that risk.  Most of us know what we are signing up for. Perhaps this shouldn’t be marketed as a kids toy, though. The last thing a parent needs is their children accidentally bringing spirits (or something darker) into the house.

Here’s an old commercial for Ouija Boards

To me the most unnerving part of the Ouija board IS the ritualistic nature. Or maybe it’s all the crazy stories I’ve heard, or the scary movies I’ve seen. You don’t see too many horror flicks start out with a group of teens saying, “Let’s pull out our K2 meter!”. There are so many stories out there and I find it hard to believe that all of them are fake.

I read this on Quora by accident, but I love this:

“Always play with respect. Imagine a Ouija board as an online chatroom where you post your telephone number and wait for someone to call you. You have no idea who is on the other line. Respect whomever you’re talking to or don’t play. You could be asking for consequences.” – Koi wozz

From @paranormalsupplies on Instagram!

Stay spooky. Stay safe. Don’t summon any demons! Part 2 coming soon!!!

Folklore: The Stolen Children

Changelings. Found in folklore throughout Europe (largely Ireland), a changeling was believed to be a fae child left in place of a human child that was then stolen by the fae. As a witch who is learning to work with the fae, these old legends and stories truly fascinate me. How many have a grain of truth to them? I believe many of them do, but not so much the changeling legends. They are entertaining stories, until you really start to think about the history behind them.

During a good part of history, Christianity overtook Ireland as well as many other places in the world.  Due to this, Pagan cultures were demonized and said to be the work of devil. Witches! Witches everywhere! There is so much evidence of old folklore being “christianized” and it makes my heart hurt. Who knows how much has been lost due to this! Who knows what we might be able to understand about the world if we had been able to preserve more of the old cultures…One great example of this is Thomas the Rhymer (which I’ll discuss more another time). There are different versions, and you can most certainly tell which was altered to fit a more Christian worldview…

Anyway, as much as I enjoy reading about changelings, I believe that these were stories created out of fear & to try and find a reason for the bad things that happened to people. If a human child was “replaced” by a fae child, it was easy to blame evil and in turn also blame the parent for a lack of faith.

“There are many variations on the following story, but the Brothers Grimm summed up in concise form the main components of a typical changeling story from mid-19th-century Germany:

A mother had her child taken from the cradle by elves. In its place they laid a changeling with a thick head and staring eyes who would do nothing but eat and drink. In distress she went to a neighbor and asked for advice. The neighbor told her to carry the changeling into the kitchen, set it on the hearth, make a fire, and boil water in two eggshells. That should make the changeling laugh, and if he laughs it will be all over with him. The woman did everything just as her neighbor said. When she placed the eggshells filled with water over the fire, the changeling said:

‘Now I am as old
As the Wester Wood,
But have never seen anyone cooking in shells!’

And he began laughing about it. When he laughed, a band of little elves suddenly appeared. They brought the rightful child, set it on the hearth, and took the changeling away.”

Again, there are variations on this story, but this is a basic summation of what was popularly agreed on.

According to legend, when a child was replaced with a fae child, they were said to have everything from deformities, behavioral issues to strange personality aspects.  Unfortunately, these may have just been disabilities that are treatable today. It was also said that the changelings should never be harmed, only threatened. If the fae had the real child with them, they may retaliate if the humans hurt the changeling.  

To prevent a child from being stolen in the first place, people would leave iron near the baby’s crib. Iron is know to repel fae. Also nearly all traditions agreed that a quick baptism would prevent this from happening. But what happens if a changeling is an adult?

In the late 1890’s a woman named Bridget Cleary was murdered by her husband who claimed she had been replaced by a changeling.  I’ll give you a link to the full story, as I cannot tell the story better than this! It’s crazy to me that someone would use folklore to try and excuse something as deplorable as murder…or do you think he really believed this to be true?

What do you guys think about this? I know this isn’t crazy in depth, but I don’t necessarily want this to turn into a blog that is purely scholarly research. 😉

http://mentalfloss.com/article/539793/bizarre-death-bridget-cleary-irish-fairy-wife

I’ll leave you with one of my favorite poems. W.B. Yeats had faery blood in his veins <3

https://www.ancient-origins.net/myths-legends/swapping-babies-disturbing-faerie-changeling-phenomenon-007261

Haunted Poems

Things have been a little insane lately, and I haven’t been able to do as much reading as I’d hoped. As I’m still studying up on the stone tape theory, I thought maybe I’d share some poems about ghosts by my favorite poets!

Why have humans always been so convinced of the afterlife? Of ghostly encounters? Is it possibly the mind’s way of avoiding our natural fear of death and the unknown? I suppose it depends on who you talk to.  Far too often my mind wanders and I ponder these ideas.

Cultures from all over believe in an afterlife of some kind. There’s been shared similar beliefs all across the world for centuries before the means to communicate far distances was possible! I’m not here to tell you one way or the other, and I believe we all have our paths. My path just happens to include lots of ghosts and lots of poetry…..

There are some poets who use “ghost” as a metaphor for old love, dream states or other things, and some for more literal purposes. Poetry is such a beautiful thing because I think we find what our hearts need when we read the words. I find all uses of “ghost” to be quite enjoyable. Maybe a ghost is many things. Who are we to say?

Sylvia Plath is one of my favorite poets of all time. This seems to be less about a spooky spectre and more about being between the two worlds during a “dream state”.

Of course Edgar Allen Poe is classic ghastly, terrifying & macabre.

Sara Teasdale is another one of my favorites. Her poems sing softly to me while making me feel every emotion on the spectrum. “Love that is never spoken goes like a ghost through the winding years”. I enjoy this one and the comparison of love to ghost, and being haunted by said ghost.

I hadn’t heard this one before, but I do quite enjoy it and will be reading more of Christina Rossetti.

Stay spooky & share your favorite poets or haunted poems with me!!!

My very own ghost story… not seen on Netflix’s Haunted!

Hey y’all, while I’m working on a more in depth entry about T.C. Lethbridge and the stone tape theory, I figured maybe I’d share one of my own spooky tales! Hoping to do some horror movie reviews soon too :).

Aside from the story I shared in Haunted (check it out if you haven’t!) I’ve had many other experiences over the years.  Nothing quite as scary and enduring as what I shared on the show but here is one that stands out:

I’ve come to the conclusion that things are attracted to me (too bad it’s spirits and not Zak Bagans), especially when I’m with my mom. About a year and a half ago, I was laying in bed watching South Park and was finally getting sleepy. My eyes were heavy and I just started to close them when I felt a really light tickle trace down my bare shoulders. Almost like when a stray hair tickles you. My hair was up in a ponytail so it wasn’t that. For a few moments I was too scared to turn around, afraid I’d see a shadow figure or something else straight out of a nightmare.  Eventually, I got the courage and turned over. I didn’t see anything standing there lurking, but my closet door was open with the light turned on. I got up, shut it and tried to convince myself that my cat learned how to open the closet door and flip the switch…it’s amazing what our brains can rationalize when we’re scared. Not long after I slipped back under my faery comforter and began to drift, something whispered “EXCUSE ME” right in my ear. You know the feeling when someone talks really close to your ear and you get goosebumps all over your body? It was exactly that. I shot up and looked around to see nothing.  Needless to say my mom and I cleared the apartment the next day and that seemed to help. Whatever comes around usually doesn’t stay for long anymore, which is nice. But sometimes it’s a real shocker when these things happen. You never really get used it!

Life is a strange ride. I’d like to think that the afterlife is too!