Spirits of Ouija with Karen A. Dahlman – The Big Séance Podcast #5

 

Karen A. Dahlman, author, psychotherapist, and Ouija-ologist, talks to us about her book, Spirits of Ouija: Four Decades of Communication. It was an absolutely amazing discussion that covered the history of the Ouija, positive aspects of the Ouija, why some fear it, and why we should perhaps look at the board in a new light. She also gives tips for your sessions, talks about the upcoming Ouija movie, and answers a listener question about the “Zozo” phenomenon.

(Here’s a link to my post with the EVP we discuss a little later on in the episode.)

 

Get this episode on iTunes!
Direct Download Link

 

Check out my review of The Spirits of Ouija.

For more on Karen, visit:

karenadahlman.com

Karen’s Books on Amazon

Karen’s Facebook Page

Twitter: @KarenADahlman

.

Thanks, Karen!

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The Big Séance Podcast can be found right here, and on iTunes. It is a place for an open discussion on ALL things paranormal, but specifically topics like ghosts & hauntings, paranormal research, spirit communication, psychics and mediums, and life after death. So basically, anything that pops up in my paranormal world. Please subscribe, submit a rating, or share with a fellow paranerd! Do you have any comments or thoughts? Please contact me at Patrick@BigSeance.com. I could decide to include them in a future show.The candles are already lit, so come on in and join the séance!


Calling All Dream Interpreters. Ready Go!

Me jogging (not swimming) through the water in a long, single lane lap pool in my very nice yard (of a very nice home). I was jogging back and forth from the deep to the shallow end. 

A group of neighborhood kids playing in the yard around me.

One girl continues to be mean, causing trouble and starting fights. 

I scold the mean girl, tell her to “peace out” and “leave the property”.

The girl leaves (after making a dramatic exit).

The rest of the kids cheer and then continue playing again.

I continue jogging through the water, where I find an obnoxious, clunky, yet decorative, brown, plastic, helmet-looking “thinking cap” contraption in the water.

Stop laughing at me. No seriously.

It is so hard to explain or describe it, but I see it in my head perfectly. 

Think –> 

Complete with wires and parts that would have to be included for such a cap.

Except more like (excuse my lame sketch)… 

 …and in the shape of a plus or cross.

And all surfaces covered in a decorative brown plastic design, similar to this.  

Stop making fun of me!

In my head, I knew that this hat/contraption had some kind of fame or significance to it. In the dream, a memory came back to me of some famous female (that I knew?) saying “This is the hat that I wore in blah blah…” as if it were a costume or prop from some old Hollywood film from the 40s or 50s.

I remember thinking I should use it for a project or something. 

 

Okay ready GO! I’ll also except referrals for therapists and psychiatrists. 

 

You might also like:

Dreaming of Apparitions

Dream Haven

Dreamwalking with Lady Gaga

A fascinating sketch, from what I remember

Dreaming of flying… and Dogs?

 

 

 


News From The Spirit World with Thomas Spychalski – The Big Séance Podcast #4

 

On this week’s episode of The Big Séance Podcast, I invited writer, blogger, and podcaster, Thomas Spychalski, to talk to us about some of the hot topics and top articles from his site, NewsFromTheSpiritWorld.com. Thomas is also co-host of The Kiwi Psychic and the Midwest Ghost Podcast. Among the topics discussed are The Amityville Ghost Boy (my personal favorite from his site), the Three Men and a Baby Ghost, Toys R Us Ghost, and the Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery! We got the chance to talk to him about some upcoming projects as well! 

Thomas has been a great friend and mentor in my blogging and podcasting journey, and I want to thank him for being on the show… and I hope he’ll join us again! Thanks, Thomas! 

 

Get this episode on iTunes!
Direct Download Link

 

For more on Thomas, visit:

News From the Spirit World on Facebook
Twitter: @news_spirit

The Kiwi Psychic and the Midwest Ghost on Facebook
Podcast Twitter: @Kiwi_Psychic
Email: thomasspychalski@hotmail.com

 

The Big Séance Podcast can be found right here, and on iTunes. It is a place for an open discussion on ALL things paranormal, but specifically topics like ghosts & hauntings, paranormal research, spirit communication, psychics and mediums, and life after death. So basically, anything that pops up in my paranormal world. Please subscribe, submit a rating, or share with a fellow paranerd! Do you have any comments or thoughts? Please contact me at Patrick@BigSeance.com. I could decide to include them in a future show.The candles are already lit, so come on in and join the séance!

 


The Ouija (2014) Movie Trailer! Finally!

I don’t know how many of you are experiencing the beautiful weather that we’ve been having here in Missouri, but I’ve been desperately trying to find someone with a pumpkin, because this weather almost requires a jack-o-lantern, and you KNOW I love it!

So along with the weather and the fact that The Big Séance Podcast was listed as a “New and Noteworthy” podcast on iTunes this week, what could possibly make things better? The Ouija (2014) movie that I blogged about over a month ago, after having seen the preview in the theatre, has finally released the trailer and poster! Let me say that again… FINALLY!

I don’t know all the details, but the movie seems to have a horrible promotion plan, which has left early fans waiting for a trailer completely frustrated, and the film’s official website seems to continually change, as if constantly “under construction”. The film’s release date has now moved to October 24th, according to the Facebook page (which has had a considerably low number of “likes”). The trailer, which seems to show the old artwork from the website, simply says “Coming Soon”. This morning the official website had the new artwork and stated the film was coming this Halloween, however, if you go to the site at this moment, all the artwork is gone and it’s a blank Blumhouse Productions page that simply says “about the film”.

Will we actually get to see the film in October? Who knows! But I’m excited! My goal is to get into an advanced screening of this film, so stay tuned! The trailer looks great, which is why all their dysfunction surprises me. Surely they have more than 2 people on staff to work on promotion.

 

 


Why I pushed pause on EVP and Ouija, and why it’s time to get going again!

This post has been rolling around in my head for several months now. I didn’t really want to put it out there until it felt right, rather than being forced. And since I’ve been waiting for a long time to get my head in the right place to write about it, I decided I’m not going to stop until I get it all out. I’m not always great at verbalizing or making sense of my thoughts… or organizing them, so forgive me.

Some of you may find this fascinating, but others might want to skip this one (or look at the pictures… which means I should add at least one). Some of you might find it frustrating. Some of you will no doubt be annoyed with me (just as I am with myself sometimes)… but as many of you have complimented me on the fact that I question things and have an unbiased, openly skeptic approach, I hope it’s okay that I’m being honest here. But I felt I needed to explain why I pushed pause on EVP and Ouija a while back. And I think it really does have a good ending! If you’re reading on, you might need a bookmark though. Ha! (Actually, this might be one of those read it before I wake up tomorrow and decide to delete it posts.)

 

Here’s the deal.

For a while now, I’ve felt like I’ve been slacking in contributing to EVP or Ouija research or experimentation, and really, spirit communication in general. I know that a lot of the earliest readers and supporters of this blog came here for exactly that. And I used to occasionally have a nice treat for these folks, like a report from a paranormal investigation, audio samples or possible EVP/Spirit Box/Ouija evidence, etc. from my sessions. Looking back through my posts, unless you count a few of my reports on my Belvoir Winery weekend, it has been since January that I’ve reported on any of my spirit communication research. Why? Well… because even as far back as a year ago, when I disappointed my friend and researcher (and long-lost cousin) Randall Keller by dragging my feet and dropping the ball on some joint EVP research, I started experiencing some serious burnout. So there really hasn’t been any research. I hope Randy forgives me, but as you’ll soon learn, I’m not the easiest partner to experiment with, so he may have gotten over it quickly.

 

There are two reasons that I see as contributing to this burnout:

This is me sitting and waiting for EVP.

This is me sitting and waiting for EVP.

First of all, it’s tiresome and time-consuming! 

If you’ve ever conducted consistent and serious EVP sessions, for example, you know that you’ll spend at least twice the time it took to record it, to just give a basic sweep through to analyze what you have. If you decide to record every day for 30 or 40 minutes over the space of a week, you can expect to be sitting at a computer with headphones for at least 7 to 9 hours analyzing that week, and probably longer! That’s a nice full day of work with no paycheck. For me though, I get so focused and detailed that it takes way longer than that. And I’m incredibly OCD about organization and tasks, so it’s not easy for me to work at it for 30 minutes here, put it away for a couple of days, 30 minutes there. That drives me nuts and clutters my brain. So when I dig into this stuff, people around me usually just don’t see me for a while.

Secondly, there’s the problem of feeling let down or disappointed after not finding evidence, or at least not much of it, considering the time that went into analysis. Though some people in the field seem to find it way easier to claim and file EVP away, I cannot. I do have treasured EVP that I believe to be very special, and yes, paranormal. But those EVP are few and far between. Believe me. I WANT these noises and sounds to be EVP, but my heart and brain simply won’t let me claim something is paranormal or a voice from a spirit, unless I know deep down that it is. It’s almost never black and white for me. I will pour over the slightest flagged portion of an audio track for an hour or more, and though it may sound paranormal, and though I could force myself to hear a message, I almost always find that there are explainable reasons for what I’m hearing. That led me to recording sessions with two recorders, once again doubling the time it takes to go over the files. Through the use of that second recorder, I was ruling out most of what I was flagging as possible EVP from the other one. When life continues to move on around you, and when real life and a job doesn’t stop calling, coming up with zero evidence when you’re experimenting consistently, is a real downer.

 

EVP is REAL! But…

Me again... waiting for EVP. A different day though, and I'm wearing a different outfit.

Me again… waiting for EVP. A different day though, and I’m wearing a different outfit.

I absolutely believe that capturing electronic voices of spirits and other entities is possible and a legitimate phenomena. What I’ve begun to realize is that everyone does it differently. Everyone has different standards. Everyone has a different amount of patience. Everyone slept a different number of hours the night before. Everyone had a different lunch. Everyone possesses different abilities, knowledge, and experience.

On some of the many paranormal investigating team sites out there, an investigator might proudly share his “Class A” EVP and be confident that the whole world will hear a particular message. I might laugh and try to figure out a polite way of saying… Dude, did you just start trying out EVP yesterday? Are you sure that’s not a footstep or someone clearing their throat? Or gas? And I’m confident that other investigators have had similar chuckles and thoughts about my claims. I’m also pretty confident that I don’t personally know any fakers out there, but you know they’re there. So then I start thinking… What’s the game? And what’s the point if everyone plays differently?

Parapsychologist Mark Leary has conducted studies on improving the interpretation of EVP among investigators and researchers. In the Summer 2013 ATransC (Association TransCommunication, formerly AA-EVP) News Journal, Dr. Leary concludes the following in an article about his research.

“Low agreement in EVP interpretations is the elephant in the room among those who are interested in EVP. All investigators know that low agreement is a problem, but they hate to confront it because it casts a pall on the entire enterprise of recording and interpreting EVP. Yet, failing to confront the issue simply creates more difficulties. Consistently acknowledging the agreement problem and encouraging investigators to be honest and cautious in how they assert their interpretations is an important first step.”

Though I haven’t yet dived into the actual studies, the mentioned article is fascinating and frustrating all at the same time. But it resonates with me and helps to explain my burnout. It is difficult to find ATransC articles and news journals if you’re not a member, but if you’re involved in EVP at all, try to look for it.

Kirsten A. Thorne, PhD publishes a blog with fascinating thoughts as she travels on her own paranormal journey. In what seemed like amazing timing, a few months ago she published Are EVP Meant Only For the Person Recording Them? and Why Investigators Typically Don’t Validate Other’s Data as Evidence. I’ve kept the links in my e-mail inbox for a long time, just for this post. In a comment to Kirsten, I tried to explain some of what I have here, but also that most of the time I find myself avoiding commenting or validating other investigator’s evidence. It doesn’t mean I don’t listen, but if I’m so incredibly hard on my own evidence, imagine what my brain goes through when I hear someone else’s evidence, and knowing I wasn’t there to see the whole situation, or to use my second recorder (or to partake in the late night snacks!) And does it really matter what I think? Does the trouble that my crazy analytical, yet complete believer brain puts me through really matter to someone else? Not really… at least not in most cases. Kirsten doesn’t need that… and neither do you. Am I still talking? (Gosh! No wonder spirits stay away from me!)

Let me just add this before I move on. Though I don’t believe a haunted location is required to capture EVP, it certainly seems to me that my very comfortable and non-haunted home struggles to let voices in, making me believe that a haunted location certainly makes it easier. It has been suggested that I haven’t yet developed the ear to capture large amounts of amazing EVP. And it very well may be that just like sensitivity to spirit, our ears may all work at different levels. God knows that if my ears are going in the same direction as my eyes, I’m in trouble. In my case though, I do not believe that my lack of confident EVP samples is due to a lack of experience or knowledge… and I hope that doesn’t sound cocky.

So where are you going with this, dude? You sound pretty down and bummed out right now. 

Well, I had to explain and describe the whole back story of my burnout, especially for those who may not know what goes into all of this, or for those considering it.

And you included “Ouija” in the title of this post. Are you ever going to get to that? Come on, dude! I’ve got dishes to do!

Meril waiting for EVP. He's more patient than I am.

Meril waiting for EVP. He’s more patient than I am.

Sorry. Okay, so this past weekend I had the pleasure and honor of having an amazing and fun discussion with Karen A. Dahlman, a person whom I have much respect for. I was interviewing her for an upcoming episode of The Big Séance Podcast. Along with being a psychotherapist, a hypnotherapist, a business owner, and an author, she’s an expert Ouija-ologist with over 40 years of practice and positive experiences with the board. In the last year, I’ve contacted her a few times after reading her book, and she’s been very supportive and willing to give advice and tips. She is so amazing and genuine, and knowledgable of so many topics, that I could listen to her all day. (I call her my “life-ologist”.)

Though I haven’t put in the same amount of time into the Ouija board as I have EVP, it fascinates me just as much or more! But I’ve experienced a similar burnout and disappointment with the board. As most of you know, I’ve yet to have any movement from the planchette in any of my sessions, whether with a partner or by myself.

 

The good part that you’ve been waiting for!

There is just something about Karen’s message that woke me up, I think. I really can’t wait for you to hear the episode. I was reminded of how patient and consistent I had to be with my first formal and consistent EVP experiment, which many of you were there for. Though I never ended up with a gold mine of voices, some tiny gems were recorded. And I thought back to the luck of capturing what I still consider to be my paranormal team’s greatest EVP in what was only our second investigation. What a rush!

Karen and I both agreed that I need to continue working with the board, only this time LET GO and have more patience. As much as it pains me to say this, I need to get my analytical brain out of it… not all of it… but I need to let go (Cue the Frozen soundtrack). 

So I’ve had a break of several months now, and I may just be getting inspired to get back into the game, with the Ouija for sure. There’s a lot of time and patience involved, but you don’t have to spend 9 hours analyzing audio (unless of course you incorporate EVP into the sessions as I have in the past).

I think I’m going to look at this research a little bit different now. It’s going to be more personal, and not so black and white. That doesn’t mean that you won’t hear about any of it or see or hear samples, or be able to follow my progress, but it’s not so much about getting validation from others, or from myself even. And just know that I probably won’t comment on your EVP, and that doesn’t mean anything either. I’ve got to lighten up, let go, and just roll with this wave.

I really don’t think that the Ouija board and I ever really got to know each other well enough yet. I’m not done with that chapter. And yes, there may even be a new, yet simplified chapter with my old friend EVP as well. But I’m not pressuring myself.

 

Thanks for reading… and listening… and for supporting… 

Peace out!

 


The Big Séance Podcast is finally up on iTunes with Annie Wilder as my latest guest! – Episode #3

 

It’s an exciting day for me! My podcast, including a brand new episode with author Annie Wilder, is finally up on iTunes! Episodes are FREE! Please help me make a big splash on iTunes by subscribing, listening, and maybe even leaving a rating! And don’t forget to share with other fellow paranerds! Thank you!

 

Author Annie Wilder talks to us about ghosts, dreams, Ouija boards, and gives us an update on her very haunted house, which is featured in her book, “House of Spirits and Whispers”.

 

 

Get this episode on iTunes!
Direct Download Link

 

For more on Annie, visit:
anniewilder.com
Annie’s Facebook Page
Annie’s Amazon Page
Monsters in America – Badlands episode

 

Thanks, Annie!

 

The Big Séance Podcast can be found right here, and on iTunes. It is a place for an open discussion on ALL things paranormal, but specifically topics like ghosts & hauntings, paranormal research, spirit communication, psychics and mediums, and life after death. So basically, anything that pops up in my paranormal world. Please subscribe, submit a rating, or share with a fellow paranerd! Do you have any comments or thoughts? Please contact me at Patrick@BigSeance.com. I could decide to include them in a future show.The candles are already lit, so come on in and join the séance!

 

 


Submit Ouija Board Questions or Comments for an Upcoming Podcast with Karen A. Dahlman!

From one great podcast guest to another, I have been so incredibly blessed this summer as I start this new journey! If you’ve not yet listened, you’ve missed my wonderful friend Marilyn Painter, and the beautiful cemetery photography of Mary Homick. Within the next few days I’ll post my conversation with the great Annie Wilder, and shortly after that a fun conversation full of paranormal hot topics with Thomas Spychalski of NewsFromtheSpiritWorld.com. 

 

Upcoming Topic: Ouija Boards! Karen and I need to hear from you!

But this post is in regards to a future podcast episode with Karen A. Dahlman, author and leading and expert Ouija-ologist, having researched the talking board since 1973.  

The Ouija board is just one of those topics, ya know? Kind of like politics, all you have to do is mention the words “Ouija board” in a conversation, no matter what kind of crowd you’re with, and you’re likely to spark some very interesting, stories, opinions, fears, and misconceptions. If you’re among members of certain paranormal subcultures, you might even find yourself in the middle of a heated debate.

Here’s what we need:

  • Questions about the Ouija board
  • Concerns with the Ouija board
  • Opinions on the Ouija board
  • Fears that you may have about the Ouija board
  • Do you have any stories or experiences with the Ouija board?  

Be aware that we could discuss your comment or question in the episode, and we’ll use first names only! 

 

We will record the episode on Saturday July 12, so submit your questions and comments now!

Ready GO!

 

You might also like: 

Ouija: A New Movie Coming in October! (Big Séance)
The Spirits of Ouija: Four Decades of Communication (Big Séance)
Thanksgiving Ouija Session 2013 (Big Séance)
EVP/Ouija/Spirit Box Session: “Ouija… Board” (Big Séance)

 

 


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