What if you were trying to contact the dead and all you got was a recorded message? This may not be as bizarre as it sounds. Both in my personal life and in the course of my work conducting space clearing and home blessings I’ve experienced enough odd occurrences to become convinced of the existence of some kind of phenomenon that fits pretty well with most descriptions of a ghost or spirit.
Whilst it seems to me to be intellectually lazy to simply adopt prevalent beliefs or theories and believe in them as the truth, I do believe wholeheartedly in the quote from William Paley, “There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all argument, and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance. This principle is, contempt prior to examination.” Not surprising since I love information, enjoy civilised argument or discussion and can’t resist examination. Especially the examination of strange things. So, let’s have some fun.
Let’s get back to that recorded message. One night, a few years ago now when I lived a slightly more conventional life and spent most of my time in a recording studio (I only said slightly), I got to the end of a late night session and, as usual, put down the guitar, switched off the keyboard and went to bed.
The following morning, after coffee and some toast, I went back into the studio. Curiously, the recording software was already running and looking at the elapsed time on the recording I realised it had been all night. Normally I’d have just stopped and rebooted it, but we’d had some strange experiences with something unseen that was quite intrusive ever since we’d moved into that particular house. Thus, out of curiosity, I rewound the recording and in doing so discovered that instead of the flat line of nocturnal silence, there were sound waves on the display. Something had been recorded during the night while the household quietly slept.
Obviously I couldn’t resist, didn’t really try for that matter, playing the recording back. It was impossible to make out words but there was the unmistakable sound of a human voice, though not one belonging to any of the current occupants of the house. Sitting right there, on my computer, in our home, someone was talking to me. This was my first experience of Electronic Voice Phenomenon, and put together with the other strange experiences we’d had it got me thinking.
Many years before, I’d had a discussion with my father about archaeoacoustics. The focus of this branch of archeology is quite different now but then it was still in it’s infancy and tended to revolve around an idea first discussed by David E.H. Jones through his “Daedalus” column, in the February 1969 edition of New Scientist.
The theory was, that through vibrations transmitted along the arm of a crafts person, their voice might be recorded into malleable materials such as clay or plaster. That a pot, while on a potter’s wheel might carry a recording of their voice, imprinted by a finger nail. Or the plaster of a wall might be Played using a stylus, to reveal the conversation, or at least one side of it, of an ancient plasterer. Apparently, experiments involving a stylus and some headphones did reveal words and fragments of sentences, at least in some plaster.
So if voice recordings of the long deceased could reside on the surface of such materials, made by a primitive, physical mechanism, what more of them might be recorded in the molecular, atomic and energetic substance of a building? Laid down not by an arm or trowel, but by their bioenergy field. Their life force. Their Chi, Prana or Scalar waves, as theorised by Nikola Telsa.
Modern digital recording equipment is entirely electronic, making it very sensitive to any form of energy or magnetic field but where did my recording come from? Perhaps from the walls themselves. A copy of a recording laid down centuries before by an electro magnetic source, such as a human central nervous system, in the energy of the atomic structure of the granite (It was a very old house). What else of that person, beyond their voice, might be similarly recorded in the stone.
It’s interesting to note that many hauntings feature apparitions that repeat the same behaviour, even following old room layouts, hence walking through walls and appearing in the most inappropriate or even disturbing of places. Some are even said to be predictable in the timing of their appearance. Often turning up on macabre anniversaries, such as the day of their untimely death. A time that might well have caused them to produce a powerful burst of mental and emotional energy in the form of fear, confusion or sadness.
We know that everything in the universe, ourselves included, is essentially made of energy. We know that energies interact leaving each other changed, often permanently. Is it so far fetched to imagine that we might interact with our surroundings in such a way as to leave an energetic imprint, a recording within them? That this might be played back via the essentially electro magnetic functioning of the human central nervous system to appear to the owner of such a nervous system as a seemingly strange apparition?
Not all apparitions follow this pattern of repetitive behaviour and there are probably many different types of these parapsychological phenomena, each with their own cause and anatomy. However, this seems to be an interesting possibility as an explanation for at least one of them. As usual I’d love to hear about your experiences and ideas so please join this strange and fascinating discussion by commenting below.