Grieving in “the world’s happy times” & how you may help us

Courtesy of Lindsay Holmes Deputy Healthy Living Editor, The Huffington Post                         

For those who are grieving, the holidays are hardly “the most wonderful time of the year.” Not only are they navigating their pain, they’re doing it during a time that’s supposed to be joyous.

Loved ones often try to alleviate some of the grief a person may be feeling by offering helpful phrases or advice, but what may seem like a supportive statement could actually be exacerbating a person’s sadness, Dan Reidenberg, chair of the American Psychotherapy Association, told The Huffington Post.

“Certain statements don’t take into account what the grieving person is feeling,” Reidenberg said. “They end up really focused on the person who isn’t grieving.”

Take a look at advice from Reidenberg and a couple of additional experts and avoid these common pitfalls:

1. “Smile, it’s the holidays.”

While this is a good intentioned way of trying to cheer someone up, it may come across as invalidating.Lindsay Holmes Deputy Healthy Living Editor, The Huffington Post                                 

“Statements like these end up sending a message to the grieving person ‘hide your sadness’ or “’it’s not okay to be sad,’” Reidenberg said. “This hurts them, makes them feel more alone and that their grief might somehow be wrong.”

2. “Next year will be better.”

Grief often makes the future look foggy.

“The holidays are filled with memories of good times, happy times, when loved ones and friends shared experiences and made memories together,” Reidenberg said. “Those are now in the past for the person grieving and that is very hard on them.”

Include the individual in your holiday preparations and just spend quality time with them when they need it, Reidenberg suggested. A supportive presence goes further than you think.

3. Any questions about the details of the death.

Curiosity should be stifled in this case, according to Nancy Marshall, a licensed professional counselor and author of Getting Through It: A Workbook for Suicide Survivors.

“Don’t force anyone to tell the story over and re-expose the trauma,” Marshall told HuffPost. “Your right to the ‘news’ does not trump their need for well-being.”

4. “Let’s try not to think about them right now.”

“People have a hard time being around someone who is sad and grieving, so they often try to take their mind off it or somehow make it better and the reality is that sometimes it just can’t be better,” Reidenberg said.

Acknowledging a person’s loss is crucial. Instead, try asking the grieving individual about any traditions they used to love to do with the person who passed, Reidenberg advised. Allow the person to guide you on how much or little they want to discuss.

5. “They’re in a better place.”

It’s easy to default on clichés, but they often come across as impersonal. Phrases like “everything happens for a reason” and “they’re in a better place now,” can often make a person grieving feel even more isolated if they aren’t at a place where they can accept what happened yet, Seidenberg said.

Try saying something like “I can’t imagine how you must be feeling” or “Is there anything I can do for you?” instead. And never underestimate the power of saying that you’re sorry this happened to them.

Ultimately, grief will subside but your support through the process is vital for the person who is in pain.

“It certainly will never be ‘okay’ that this happened, but time will pass and the sharpest pain will recede from consciousness,” Marshall said. “Always be compassionate with yourself as an observer and with your friend who experienced a horrible loss.”

And a wonderful resource from the Forever Family Foundation that is an extremely positive and uplifting way of grieving worth checking out: “Transforming Grief -Love knows no Death”.  Check it out on the link below.


“The French Revelation” by N. Riley Heagerty- compelling read for all those interested in the afterlife, life beyond the grave, past the veil of death.

The material for this post has come from the White Crow Books site.  I could not give this book a better write up.  This is beyond excellent in reading for those interested in this field.  the_french_revelation


Emily S.French (1830-1912), was one of the greatest American independent voice mediums. She was investigated by the famous Buffalo attorney, Edward C.Randall (1860-1935), who intended to expose her as a fraud but was over time, and after completing many exacting experiments testing her powers, completely convinced that she was genuine. Mr.Randall became a champion for the cause of survival of death and communication with spirits. During the seances, which were held in complete darkness, the spirit voices would manifest apart from and totally independent of Mrs.French, who was not in trance. The voices would literally manifest from thin air, and carry on conversations with Mr.Randall or whoever else he invited to the seances. A stenographer was employed to take down word for word conversations and Mr.Randall asked many searching, important questions, which are all included in The French Revelation. The book is illustrated & the Appendices contain a wealth of information, including a suggested reading list containing many of the great classics involving independent voice/direct voice mediumship.

About the author

N. Riley Heagerty, has been involved non-stop in research involving Spiritualism and Physical Mediumship since 1985.

He has, up to the present day, collected and read more than 600 books – mostly rare, on the subject, and has lectured extensively in England and America.  His first published book, The French Revelation, dealt exclusively with the Independent Voice mediumship of Mrs. Emily S. French, of Rochester, New York.

Mr. Heagerty, considered one of the leading authorities on American Physical Mediumship in the United States has said, “The research of Mediumship and Spirit Communication is just as exciting and enthralling to me in the present day as it was during the first days of my research. It is an ongoing adventure that will never cease.  The subject is vast, marvelous and contains, in this researchers opinion, the most important truths we could ever know.  The heyday of Spiritualism, what I have termed the ‘Century of Wonders,’ existed between 1848 & 1948. Mrs. French along with May and Elizabeth Bangs are just three of the many that demonstrated their wondrous gifts within this time period and I am honored to write about them. “

Sample chapter


“Nothing is too wonderful to be true.” –Faraday

Audacious, startling and incredible would be mild characterizations of the assertions that were contained within the first published work of Edward C. Randall entitled Life’s Progression; Research in Meta-psychics (Henry B. Brown Company: Buffalo, New York, 1906.), which he suddenly and unexpectedly dropped like an atom bomb of controversy into the religious world. His announced object in publishing the work, which he said represented fifteen years’ research in meta-psychics, a comparatively unknown field of study, was to illuminate, but he also knew that it would produce a fire storm of heat as well as light.

“There is no death; there are no dead.”

These words stood out on the cover of the book, and in its foreword he asserted the following: “I have no need of creeds nor use for faiths. Positive knowledge has displaced them both and I have come to know there is no death; there are no dead. That change is one step only in life’s progression, in the unceasing march of evolution, in which neither identity nor individuality is lost, and that life goes on and labor continues as the soul works toward perfection, for progress is an absolute law that nothing can resist.”

His words were a direct challenge to orthodox thinking and through all the pages of his work ran this disconcerting challenge to those whose idea of God, of heaven, hell and a future life were based strictly on the Bible. If there is no death, if there are no dead, what then would become of the resurrection morn; where shall we look for the great White Throne, where for the One who shall intercede for the sinful; where shall the separation of the goats and sheep take place; where are the streets made of gold? Mr. Randall’s findings annulled these widely accepted teachings. He was convinced that every man must, and will, stand as his own redeemer. He was not inferring by his statements that he did not believe in the life hereafter, nor in the universal power and controlling force which is denominated God and which is thought by some to be clothed with a personality and by others considered the essence of good; the true spirit of love, only not embodied. He did not contend the existence of these things. He did believe in a heaven, not a heaven of idleness and exclusiveness, but a heaven peopled by active, progressive and hard-working spirits. Mr. Randall likewise believed in hell, only it was not a hell where punishment is meted out in an atmosphere of flames and sulfurous fumes. In this modern day, belief in a hell of fire and brimstone may seem outmoded, but there are some, rest assured, who still look upon hell as a place of physical torment. Many conceive hell to be a place apart from heaven where the wicked have gained admission by their actions while on earth. There is also the steadily growing belief that hell is a state of remorse of the spirit, and this view comes extremely close to Mr. Randall’s hell.

The author of Life’s Progression published four more, equally startling books which together embodied the results of his psychic research. The works were the outcome of what Mr. Randall termed his positive knowledge, yet he never claimed that he was the only one that knew or could know. This certainty, in the year 1906, was remarkable of psychic literature. Many books had been written previously about the life hereafter; men of many minds had reasoned from many viewpoints as to what might be seen beyond death’s mysterious door. These speculations began in the very early ages and have continued right up until this present day, but at the turn of the century, few books, if any, had been written which purported to give exact and definite knowledge of the life that is beyond the Everlasting line.

And where did Mr. Randall get his information? His answer, always direct and without equivocation, was: “From those that are living that life” he said, “from spirits with whom I have talked voice to voice, for many years,” and he meant “voice-to-voice” literally. Commenting on the reasons for publishing his research, he further stated:” I do so in the hope that the fear of death may pass, that those who mourn may find consolation, and that all may find understanding. All the facts that we know and can gather—the miracle of death; each new birth; all teachings from the great beyond, and here; all discoveries and inventions; all the wondrous paintings, miracles of form and color; the marvelous marbles that seem to live and breathe; the secrets told by winding stream and desert sand; the record of all events evidence a Directive Force that we call God, that finds expression not only on this poor earth of ours, but in the planes beyond, where all at last must go. I have come to know something of the plan, purpose and operation of the Directive Force, not only here, but in the planes beyond. Having come into touch with those who live there, we have discussed these questions, and their teachings, faithfully recorded, I have given to you as they were given to me unaltered and unchanged.”

The world seemed to stand at attention when Mr. Randall made public the results of his research and soon after, his works attracted the following of the two foremost American psychic researchers at the time, Dr. Richard Hodgson and Prof. James Hyslop, and also, England’s leading experts of psychic research, J. Arthur Findlay and Vice-Admiral W. Usborne Moore (see Appendices and Reading List). This was, after all, no ordinary man making these astonishing assertions concerning the very nature of man’s destiny; Mr. Randall was an esteemed member of the highest echelon of society, one of the most powerful leaders of business in the United States, and, furthermore, a celebrated trial lawyer, well known for his abilities of sifting evidence and interrogation of witnesses on the stand. His very presence within this body of research was, in itself, a proclamation of its seriousness.

Edward Caleb Randall was born in Ripley, New York, in 1860 and obtained his preliminary education in the district school and academy of his native place. He was prepared for college under private tutorship and he pursued his classical studies at Allegheny College in Meadville, Pennsylvania. In 1883 he was admitted to the bar, having been practicing at Dunkirk since 1879. He married Maria Howard of Buffalo in 1897. At the time of his death in 1935, he was the president of the American Super Power Corporation, Super Power Syndicate Inc., Niagara Terminals Buildings Inc., Cataract Development Corporation, South Buffalo Gas Corporation, vice-president of Eureka Smelting Company, and director of Prest Air Corporation.

Mr. Randall stated when he began his investigations into psychic research, he had absolutely no place in his mind for even a conception of a spiritual existence, or for any agencies in the universe other than matter and force. For this famous trial lawyer and astute businessman, his days of agnosticism and conjecture ended and a wondrous journey of transformation began with his introduction to a quiet little woman who lived on Tremont Street in Rochester, New York. She was a psychic medium, her name, Mrs. Emily S. French.

Emily French And the Direct-Independent Voice Phenomena

“For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit… To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits…”
– First Epistle of Paul the Apostle 1 Corinthians, Chapter 12

Arthur Findlay, in his classic book, Looking Back, published in 1961, mentions that when he visited Mr. Randall in 1923 and asked him how he became interested in the phenomena of Direct-Voice, Mr. Randall responded by saying that in 1890 he had been approached by a number of his associates who requested him to investigate the practices of a lady named Mrs. French since, reportedly, she was a magician of the highest class and the cleverest fraud in America. It was assumed that Mr. Randall, being a master of detecting fraud on any level, was the last person who could be bamboozled by any charlatan, especially one pretending to be contacting the so-called dead. He stated, “I went (to Mrs. French’s home in Rochester), and found there two others, both men of national reputation. We sat in a dark room for two hours, and heard what purported to be voices…we found Mrs. French far along in years, of rare refinement, a beautiful character, and we were satisfied, a perfectly honest woman.” He quickly realized that the accusations made previously by his associates were absurd. Without exception, Mrs. French was held in the highest regard by her acquaintances and, most astonishingly and of the highest evidential level, took no money for her services. That she inspired trust is evident in the wondrous reports about her, some of which are given by those with weighty names and marks of scholarship. Mr. Randall was to eventually consider this unassuming woman from Rochester the greatest living psychic in America, if not in the entire world. His deep and unalterable conviction of the extraordinary nature of the case led him to experiment with and investigate the phenomena attending Mrs. French for twenty-two consecutive years; phenomena so marvelous that such occurrences would be impossible to apprehend unless an individual be familiar with the experience itself or the literature which deals with it.

In the presence of the medium, Mrs. French, but quite apart from her, voices, claiming to be those of deceased people would speak, and, when replied to, would answer back intelligently, which proved that not only was a mind behind the voice, but also that the speaker was able to hear as well as speak. Isolated voices manifesting from space without visible source of agency, could something be too wonderful to be true? Absolutely not, according to Mr. Randall. The proof, he said, was incontrovertible and conclusive, brought about by the sheer weight of evidence resulting from his many sittings and exacting experiments in which he tested the powers of Mrs. French in every conceivable way he could devise. The evidence was spoken; it was established through the attestations of men, women and children who had experienced the drama of death and who had come back by way of the direct-independent voice to share their experiences with those still living in the physical world.

Concerning the actual mechanics of speech, the following was spoken to Mr. Randall during one of the earlier séances:

“There are in our group,” the spirit replied [after being asked by Mr. Randall to tell of the conditions which enabled them to speak], “seven people, —all expert in the handling of the electric and magnetic forces, and when you and the psychic, Mrs. French, meet, the vital force that emanates from her personality is gathered up. We also take physical emanations—substances—from you and the others with you, while we contribute to the mass a certain spirit force. Now, that force, which we gather and distribute, is just as material as any substance that you would gather for any purpose; it is simply higher in vibration. We clothe the organs of respiration of the spirit who is to speak, so that his voice will sound in your atmosphere, and when this condition is brought about, it is just as natural for a spirit as it is for you. You then have what is known as the direct or independent voice, that is, the voice of a spirit speaking as in earth life.”
Although very little information is obtainable on the early life and biographical background of Mrs. French, some insight into her person and practices may be gleaned through the following passages.

This information was taken from a letter written by the secretary of the Rochester Art Club, Mr. A.W. Moore, dated 1905:
With a newspaperman’s soul, I found out something about the lady’s antecedents. She belongs to the American branch of the Pierrepont family, the head of which is the Earl of Manvers, whose principle estate is at Holme Pierrepont, Nottinghamshire, England. I borrowed a book giving the history of the American branch, in which there is a list of the members of the family then living in the United States. In the list I found the name of the late Judge Pierrepont, one time minister to the Court of Saint James, London, and at the very end, I found the names of Mrs. French and her only child, Mrs. D. Oberst. Mrs. French is the widow of the late Lieut. French of the United States Volunteers, who lost his life during the war of the Rebellion. She draws a pension of an officer’s widow. For many years she has made her home with her daughter, and her chief pleasure in life is administering to the comfort and education of her grandchildren. She is a lady of refinement and possesses the charming, unassuming and gentle manners of a well-born race.

From The Encyclopedia of Psychic Science:

Mrs. Emily French (1831-1912), of Rochester, a relation of President Cleveland, excellent American direct-voice medium. She was investigated for more than twenty years by Edward C. Randall of Buffalo. Isaac K. Funk and Prof. Hyslop [see Part III and appendices] also conducted remarkable experiments and proved that the voices did not originate in the vocal organs of the medium. “Red Jacket,” her Indian guide, had an exceedingly loud, masculine voice which could have easily filled a hall with a seating capacity of two thousand people. The medium at that time, was a frail old woman, with a weak and irregular heart and very deaf. Yet the communicators-the spirits-could hear every remark of the sitters at the séances.

As a superb example of a completely spontaneous situation involving the phenomena attending Mrs. French and one with the highest evidential value, I include the testimony of Mrs. French’s personal physician and friend, Dr. Jane M. Frear, who lived at 21 Orton Place, Buffalo, New York; it is dated 1907:

“My father [and I] at one time were talking with her, we standing on opposite sides of a doorway. The light from the next room made Mrs. French’s face plainly visible to me. I was looking at her and talking to her when the loud voice known as “Red Jacket” spoke to us from the top of the stairway, which was in the dark. I have also heard a voice beginning to speak while she was talking. This has happened on several occasions while I was chatting with her-her deafness prevented her from catching the first vibrations of the other voice or voices. I have also heard two voices singing at the same time-she does not sing. These voices were male voices.”

Emily French was 80 years, 11 months and 12 days old when she quietly passed away on June 22, 1912 at her home at 227 Tremont Street in Rochester, where she had spent most of her adult life. She was buried in Mt. Hope cemetery in that city.
The Complete Work of Edward C. Randall with Emily S. French

“Seek, and you will find; for you have aids from Nature for the discovery of Truth. But if you are not able yourself, by going along those ways, to discover that which follows, listen to those who have made the enquiry.” –Epictetus

Ninety years after his first published work startled the world, I present to a new audience as one edition, the complete Meta-psychic research of Edward C. Randall with the spiritual medium, Mrs. Emily S. French. Included, in edited form, are his five books, published between 1906 and 1922, and never before published, rare excerpts from his last unfinished manuscript, written in 1926, which I was fortunate enough to locate in Melbourne, Australia. Most importantly, all of the words spoken by the spirits and stenographically recorded by Mr. Randall and published by him are included in The French Revelation.

To all those who are interested in life after death and spirit communication, or to those who are uncertain of their beliefs, the case of Mrs. French cannot be denied as one of the most evidential cases in psychic history. Greed and notoriety played no part in Mrs. French’s life. There was no media frenzy, sensationalism or Internet back then. She refused money from anyone, and wanted nothing in return, except that all who experienced her mediumship would gain from it, and gain they did. Total selflessness was at the core of her spirituality. Many books have been published on the various types of phenomena manifesting in the séance rooms all over the world and many of these are classics, (see Suggested Reading List), but few, are infused with direct, in depth, specific teachings from the world of spirit. Teachings that help us to understand the meaning of life itself, here and now, and in the afterlife where all, without exception, are headed. Compiled into one solid edition at last, this body of work is truly the Magnum Opus of Emily S. French and Edward C. Randall and one of the most important works ever recorded.
The Spirits have said:

“We communicate with you not merely to prove survival but to attract attention to the important truths connected with it. We are anxious to show mankind that earth-life is not complete in itself, but contributes to a larger order, that it is an episode in a stupendously larger drama.”
God does seem to work in strange and wonderful ways. After having finished compiling The French Revelation, I found in a musty-smelling little sequestered nook in his hometown library, yet another faded obituary notice for Edward Caleb Randall, and in it was a statement from his memoirs which he completed before his death in 1935. He had written that the world would not be sufficiently advanced for the theories set forth in his work until another half century had passed; at a time when, as he expressed it, “the world is ready.” It was precisely fifty years later, in 1985, when I came upon, quite unexpectedly, Randall’s great classic, The Dead Have Never Died, and determined shortly after reading it to try and locate what other research he may have done and compile it into one complete edition. My entire mission has now come to pass, and I bow in thanks to the Infinite Intelligence who, it seems, has allowed me to have played a part, however large or small, in fulfilling the futuristic prophecy of this great American researcher, Mr. Edward C. Randall, with the psychic wonder of the world, Mrs. Emily S. French.

May these glorious truths, given to the world by these two tireless explorers into man’s greatest mystery, now infused with new life and set on its course once again, provide a more clear and rational understanding of life’s progress, and by so doing, enrich the world; complimenting God, natural laws, universal Truth and substantiate to a profound degree, man’s rightful place in the unceasing march of evolution.
– N. Riley Heagerty, New York, 1995

Publisher: White Crow Books
Published March 2015
318 pages
Size: 229 x 152 mm
ISBN 978-1-910121-46-7

The Veil is Lifting – a documentary on orbs


Here is a documentary on Orbs.. .. “The Veil is Lifting”
This documentary is a beautiful explanation of orbs and includes some of the early modern day pioneers who wrote upon the subject and whose works are classics in the field and which I shall reference below as I have read and recommend them thoroughly.    Miceal Ledwith and Klaus and Gundi Heinemann added a great deal to our modern day knowledge on the subject.
Several others are interviewed in this documentary and they go into depth about the ramifications of the phenomena.
We live in extraordinary times with access to much more information than ever, about more subjects, in more depth than ever but in so many areas we seem to have lost our way.   I leave you with a teaser I wonder how many of you will see what I am very sure is the appearance albeit briefly of an orb flashing through the screen.  It happens in two places, enjoy this documentary with it’s very thought provoking contribution.
The Orb Project Miceal Ledwith & Klaus Heinemann   Atria Paperbacks
ISBN 9781582701820
Orbs: Their Mission and Messages of Hope Klaus & Gundi Heinemann
ISBN  9781401928865
two other excellent books are:
Orbs and Beyond Hall & Pickering   ISBN 9781780993829
Beyond Photography Hall & Pickering  ISBN  9781905047901
a further source for reading and investigating  I would recommend
Sandra Underwood Orbs, Lightwaves and Cosmic Consciousness 
ISBN  978-1-4415-6200-5

Grieving Parent’s Handbook

Cover for WEB


This book compiled by Sheri Perl Migdol and members of the Prayer Registry Team is an excellent little resource for grieving parents as well as those who seek to support them in their grief.

Access this book and more of Sheri’s work through this link:

Once you have gone to Sheri’s page click on the picture of the book  to download a free copy of it.  There are also more resources on Sheri’s page that may be helpful for you to consider.






“Mindfulness is the ability to focus on the emotions, thoughts and sensations occurring in the present moment. It can ease a variety of mental conditions, including feeling bored, anxious or worried about a task. Mindfulness teaches us to make a conscious effort to stay in control and focus on the here and now. It teaches us to stop and concentrate on our breathing for a few minutes before continuing, paying close attention to the task at hand. It means our minds aren’t flitting from one subject to the next while we are doing one particular thing.   From the Little Book of Spirituality by Gilly Pickup.

Mindfulness for some is difficult and needs lots of practice. Our brains process and an extraordinary amount of information every minute. Most of which we are unaware of, but it goes on and on and on processing information.

When in the grieving state mindfulness is often very elusive, however, it is just at that time where mindfulness comes into its own.

Grieving takes a lot of energy and often our thoughts constantly wander into thoughts of what, why, what if, how can I go on and a million other repetitive thoughts. Some of these thought processes take over our lives and can create a world devoid of colour and energy.

Anxiety looms large from these thoughts and feelings, and one soon begins to spiral or at least seem like being spun viciously out of control through a constant plethora of negative emotions, feeling helpless. Ultimately one begins to consider they are at the at the mercy of their misery.

It is when thoughts run rampant where the getting into the practice of mindfulness can come into its own to help your mind and body take back some control. Mastering mindfulness will put you in charge of your grief and not render you a victim to its darkness.

Another excellent resource that I have come across and personally used is “Mindfulnessa practical guide to Finding Peace in a Frantic World”, by Mark Williams and Danny Penman. It is a book that teaches you what is happening to you and how to go about finding that piece of peace. It also comes with a handy little CD. Check it out; it might just be one of the best investments you make in yourself on your journey through life.


Prof Betty’s bio & my review

About the author
Stafford Betty got his Ph.D. in theology from Fordham University, where he specialized in Asian religious thought and Sanskrit. Today he is a professor of world religions at California State University, Bakersfield, and a researcher on death and what follows. In 2011 he published The Afterlife Unveiled, which maps out the afterlife as described by seven discarnates communicating through mediums. The Imprisoned Splendor, is a novel set in the world beyond. Heaven and Hell Unveiled: Updates from the World of Spirit is a non-fiction work which outlines a more fully fleshed out presentation of the afterlife.  His 2016 fictional work, The Severed Breast is published by White Crow Books. Betty’s latest non-fiction work, When did you ever become less by dying? Evidence for the Afterlife from Philosophy, Religion, and Psychical Research is published in summer 2016. Stafford writes a blog for The Huffington Post and White Crow in an attempt to reach non-specialists. Many of his articles are available at

My review as posted on Amazon UK & USA

Professor Betty’s  studied examination of the evidence of life after death through its many forms using as a guide a beacon of the physicalist, materialist, dualism and what can only rise above these restrictive philosophies to that of his theory of Qualified Monism. I propose this work will move forward and come to be a classic in the literature.  His evidential case for survival after death proven beyond doubt, something that had I not been brought up with the aforementioned societal guides I may have fared better.   I know that walk.  In late December 2012 as I cradled in my arms my dying 15-year-old daughter with utter devastation I had no idea of what was to be a monumental journey, to satisfy a grieving mother’s desperate need to know where her child was and more importantly was she safe.  My journey follows Professor Betty’s book so eerily that I have no doubt it came to me for a reason.  From hell to the whole, I too researched and researched almost chapter by chapter of this book for the evidence of continuity of survival after death and the type of survival I could expect she was now in, and I now communicate through EVP’s.  I wish no-one to have their paradigm shift the way I did but to gain the best benefit of life on earth that are as Professor says is what is so needed; the benefits outweigh our present reality neatly summed in the later pages with the keen eye of a man who can see a different paradigm.  This work is not above the average reading ability for the Professor has distilled science to a reachable state for us all. Other reviews detail precisely other angles of the book.  I understand completely Professor Betty’s final story of the woman whose child perished in the war because I am there now.


When did you become less by dying?


Professor Betty front
Professor Betty back






In  this book Professor Stafford Betty pulls together the best evidences for survival of death.  The very best, he maintains, come from psychical research. The near-death experience, deathbed visions, reincarnational memories of children, communication from the so-called dead through mediums, apparitions, poltergeists, spirits that reach out to us through electronic instruments, spirits that attach themselves to our bodies, and episodes of terminal lucidity in Alzheimer’s patients are all included.

But philosophy has a lot to say as well.  In simple terms Betty lays out the evidence against reductive materialism that claims all our experience is generated by the brain and that we perish at death.  Viewing the brain as an instrument put to good use by the immaterial self is much more consistent with the evidence.

Finally, he surveys the universal affirmation by the world’s religions that we survive death.

Betty brings together memorable examples and careful analysis of each type of evidence.  Each type is imposing enough by itself, but taken together they build a case for survival of death that is insurmountable.  He shows that life after death, as mysterious as it is, should no longer be regarded as a hypothesis, but, like dark matter, a fact.


Communicating with a parent who has experienced a child/ren passing.


Humans have been fascinated and yet fearful of the word death since time immemorial.    It has been a fascinating area of research that I have been doing the past two years in my search for meaning to my daughter’s death.  It was not until I buried the WHY word that I began to grieve progressively and dare I say in a more healthy way.  Everyone grieves differently, but the loss of a child is by far the most devastating loss of all losses.  Many people approach those whose child/ren have passed with a statement that damages further.  Statements like “Oh I know how you feel, my mother/father/husband/wife died x days/months ago” – wrong:  nothing, and I will repeat that for added emphasis, nothing compares to grieving a child.


Every single parent who experiences this pain does so in a manner that is unique.  No two people grieve in the same way or manner.  It is a very odd thing indeed when we have a word for a woman who has had a partner die – widow when a man loses his partner he becomes a widower and when children are without their parents they are called orphans, but there is no word for the mother and father whose child dies.  I wonder why.


Emma’s death at times put me into surreal positions of wondering who was I now to be calling myself a mother.   The implication of mother signifies that your offspring are accounted for somewhere among the living.  It was certainly one of the oddest sensations that I endured, the complete loss of my role as a mother, a role that filled me with pleasure and pride.


Equally hard are some of the inane statements made to us: statements like God needed another angel, she/he is at peace now, oh well at least you have x number of other children.  So many foolish statements are made that often the person most in need of empathy ends up a mess.  Another one is time heals, or you need to get on with life and stop dwelling on the past or your child would not want you to do, be like this.  The same applies to be strong or turn to God he will help you.   Not one of these is validating for the griever. Indeed they all hurt us more.  Depending upon the circumstances individual statements about the environment are made.  In my situation, I was told by a “healer” that if my daughter had thought positively, she would not have got cancer, and by the same person, she could have used her mind to get well.  Really!  Other similar statements were oh x, or y cures cancer did she do that.  Now people get real, don’t you think that the oncologists and parents would have been all over it,  about this so-called miracle  and often expensive wonder drink/pill/thought.


One thing that many people forget is that we have two ears and one mouth and ought to be used in that proportion.  What a grieving person needs the most is to be listened to, to be valued, to be allowed to tell their stories over and over again.   People often say I don’t know what to say, and that is okay because no words will be the right ones so it is better, to be honest, and say you do not know what it is like, I can only imagine,  I cannot know.  We who are grieving know that you do not know because unless you have been there, no-one can know the pain, the helplessness, the utter desolation that you feel especially in that first couple of years.


My grief started with a state of catatonia, where one does not talk, is not aware of surroundings, etc.  In other words a total break from reality.  For the first two years, I lived in a fog-like atmosphere.  This year has been the best and the worst regarding my grieving.  It is still raw, but I am not so much at the mercy of my emotions as I was.  Yes, time does soften the edges, but it will never heal my heart.

A terrific little book that is worth downloading if you need to hear what works best for us is below.