TO TALK OR NOT TO TALK, TO THE DEADJuly 24, 2018
Think about what happened at the “House of Horror” in Delhi where eleven persons hung themselves, reportedly because of dialog with the deceased, and instructions of a departed parent’s instructions. Then decide … do you want to disturb those who should be RIPing (Rest In Peace)…
Anand Pillai and I.
He is One of India’s top Leadership gurus, Managing Director of Leadership Matters, Inc. a company focusing on building an Intrapreneural culture in organizations. He has played a major role in several Fortune 500 companies.
As for me, I am just I. Fighter and writer, whose life has been packed with activity with the living, occasionally with the dead.
That’s where Anand Pillai and I come into the picture together. Both of us were guilty of necromancy or talking to the dead, early in life. His father committed suicide when Anand was 10, leaving him, the eldest son in a key role with six siblings and their widowed mother. One day the heartbroken mother wanted to talk to her departed husband. She took Anand along when she when to meet an elderly medium. For the uninitiated, mediums purportedly mediate communication between spirits of the dead and living human beings. There are genuine mediums and phony mediums. The one who served the Pillais came in the former category and the departed Mr. Pillai was soon “online.” You know the soul is online when it inhabits the medium; the medium comes out with things only you and the departed could know, nobody else on earth was privy to those events. In this case, when the husband through the medium spoke to the wife, he was full of sorrow, and asked her forgiveness. However, when the father saw his son Anand there, he broke down – the medium began to weep uncontrollably and in anguish. The father begged the son to take care of the family, and especially warned him against a certain ruthless relative who was out to destroy them.
In my case, I was eleven, on 22 November, 1963, the year President John F. Kennedy’s was assassinated. My large family was squeezing around our huge Murphy Radio to hear the news and aftermath of the incident. My Ma had great regard for JFK as he was Catholic, and she closed her eyes sadly and said, “A very good man has died.” That night, after saying my regular night prayers, I whispered, “Uncle Kennedy, I am sad that you died. You were a good man, Ma says. Will you be my friend?” In the days that followed, prayers to the ‘phantom figures’ of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph reduced to a minimum, and my conversations with my new “Uncle” stepped up rapidly. I talked to him almost around the clock, asked him help for my exams, or how to deal with a friend who had let me down, and enquired about which topics I should study for my exams. (Later in life, a therapist told me that I had not been really ‘talking to the dead’ with “Uncle Kennedy” and other figures – I’d merely been constructing these fantasy figures in my mind to enable me to get through a difficult and traumatic childhood.)
Anand Pillai did not return to the medium, nor did he follow his father’s advice. The result: the relative warned against managed to poison one of his surviving brothers, another brother committed suicide. A sister died of cancer, and Anand himself was about to commit suicide when before he could put his neck into the waiting noose hanging down from the fan, God intervened and saved his life.
On my part, I progressed (the word should be regressed) to conversations with dead people. I had become the founder-editor of SAVVY, and amazingly found myself interviewing an elderly Parsee couple, the Bhavnagris who talked to their departed adult sons, Ratan and Vispi, who’d died in a car-crash. I had never met the couple or Vispi before, but I’d had a chance encounter with Ratan when he was alive, and I was staying with the parents of a friend who lived opposite his house, in Rustam Baug. When SAVVY came along and I was looking for unusual stories, the friend informed me about the death of the two sons; also how their parents still kept in touch with them.
When I met the parents, they flatly turned down my request for a story. By temperament, being one who doesn’t give up easily, I rang their bell the next day and was startled when they flung open their doors and invited me in, saying, “Ratoo and Vispi told us we could talk to you.” Pray how did Ratoo and Vispi do that? The parents took me to an inner room where there was a desk with piles of large red registers on one side; on the other side was an open register with a pen. Once the mother (almost uneducated) put her pen to the book, through the “automatic writing” process, as her hand moved rapidly across the page, the sons talked to her. My blood curdled when Ratoo suddenly spoke to me through his mother’s hand, telling me he remembered me and I had put on weight. This meant he could see me!
The story when published, was a sensational hit, and the old couple became busier than Bombay’s busiest child pediatrician (and then international celebrities and wrote a book on Seven Laws which sold worldwide). People from all over the country sought them out, and Maneka Gandhi, who’d become a friend of sorts after appearing on the very first cover of SAVVY, she mentioned she wanted to meet them so she could speak to Sanjay. By then, the couple and I were meeting often, friendly visits. Once, on one of the departed son’s birthday, the couple threw a huge party to which prominent personalities of Bombay came, including a judge of the High Court.
Hidden danger lurks “beyond the veil.” Spirits can lie, and ghosts can deceive. Very, very few ‘mediums’ and ‘spirit recipients’ can be trusted. Like everything else, it has become a means of wicked people trying to exploit the vulnerable.
While I was dabbling with the deceased, my personal life was going downhill very fast. There was a terrible attack on our home. I constantly felt I was not in my body, I could see myself from out of me. Things came to a head when I was once on Marine Drive driving home toward Bandra, and suddenly, within a flash, I found myself in Byculla, before the couple’s house. Had I turned paranoid and delusional on top of everything else? I could not remember driving there. When I entered their house which surprisingly was not bolted from inside, I found the aged couple in the inner room. Both had fallen down and there was no one to help them up. The sons however, had assured them that someone would come to help them. How I got there I will never know.
I was in terrible tumult, with three small children and a badly failing marriage. I wanted the dead to leave me alone and vice versa. To make matters worse, around that time, another Savvy cover woman, Air India air-hostess Maria, dropped in at my house with a prominent politician. This guy was also into ghastly ghostly activities; apparently he was someone who spirits contact when they want to pass a message to a living being (the opposite medium to the one the Pillais had gone to). He said when he was shaving that morning, Ratan and Vispi contacted him and directed him to me because they wanted me to gently request their parents to stop contacting them so often as it was delaying their progress. Progress to where or what, I had no idea and nor did I want to know. I curtly told him to tell them himself, I was not ever again going to dabble in mediumship or spiritual communication in any way, not only because of unholy willies and creepy points of high tension, but also because I realized it was a sin against God.
Just saying I had stopped, did not end the psychological and emotional warfare going to within me. Finally, I had to rush to Fr. Joe Pereira, Parish Priest of Mount Carmel Church in Bombay, where I was member, and cry out in despair. I was soundly reproached for dabbling with the spirit world during which evil spirits had evidently gotten into me. An exorcism of sorts took place and I went home. Things quieted down but I felt there were “things” inside me; life turned into a see-saw and the feeling of alarm never abated. I dreaded the thought I would have to live with it until the end of my days.
Only years later, after I had a direct encounter with Christ, and committed myself to a personal relationship with Him, hope came into my heart that I could be “freed” from the horrors within. God ordained things in such a way that the lady who became my spiritual mother was an expert in this area of Christian activity which is called “deliverance” and involves setting people free from evil spirits. It took six months of frequent prayer and “spiritual battle” to finally be freed from those horrible things that I had allowed into my being.
Thus I come to our question today: IS IT OKAY TO TALK TO THE DEAD?
Anand Pillai agrees that people do talk to the dead and admits he had spoken to his father.
With all due respect, I said, How did you know it was your father’s spirit?
“I knew that it was my father’s spirit because the medium who was a total stranger, talked just like my father, giving all the factual details of the situation when my father was alive.”
Anand would not do the same now because the Bible he believes in today, has God talking to him directly, in person through the living Christ, and through the Bible (Isaiah 8:19): “When someone tells you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living?” He adds, “Praying to the dead is strictly forbidden in the Bible, which says unambiguously, that anyone who “consults with the dead” should know it is “detestable to the Lord.” (Deuteronomy 18:11)
Muslims believe that when a person dies, he moves from this world to another realm, and his soul does not come back to his family. The dead person does not know anything about the circumstances of his family, because he is absent from them, in a state of bliss or torment.
The Hindu religion, while acknowledging the practice, discourages it. Like the Bible, Hindu scriptures also encourage you to dialogue with and get closer to the almighty.
“The practice (of talking to the dead) is less common now, among the urban crowd, but a lot of misguided youth have strayed away into this practice of talking to spirits directly (not through mediums) which is far more dangerous,” Anand said.
I agree. I think of my own ‘experimenting’ and realize that if God had not intervened and drawn me to Himself, I doubt I or my children would have been alive today. Think about what happened in the “House of Horror” in Delhi where eleven persons hung themselves, reportedly on instructions of a departed parent’s instructions. Lets cut to the chase as I present herewith a summary of intensive research on the subject, as well as a detailed conversation with Anand Pillai as to why necromancy (talking to the dead) or séances should be avoided and people of faith especially should not participate in such activities:
- Talking to the dead when you are still alive, can gain you nothing but harm you fatally if who you are talking to is not the departed person you imagine the spirit to be, but demons in disguise.
- In the living world itself, you are warned against trusting strangers who could be there to dupe and deceive you as they manipulate you to benefit themselves and harm you.
- Hidden danger lurks “beyond the veil.” Spirits can lie, and ghosts can deceive. Very, very few ‘mediums’ and ‘spirit recipients’ can be trusted. Like everything else, it has become a means of wicked people trying to exploit the vulnerable. (This is why the Holy Book advises you to turn to God instead of the dead.)
- A departed soul if summoned would express remorse and regret, caution and care; it would rarely give instructions to harm and destroy. Furthermore, you may think you’ve opened yourself to a particular spirit – but there is a possibility that another or many others slid in through the opening. Do you think it is going to be simple to get them out?
- Is there afterlife? Of course there is, most religions accept that in one way or another. However, there are strict boundaries between each realm, for a reason. Cross them and you will find yourself in the lunatic fringe. The paranormal is a slippery slope. We can start out with something that seems innocuous, fun, and harmless, as with reading a horoscope or tapping an Ouija board. Nevertheless, once you open that door to the demonic, it is very difficult to close, and there are scary statistics of those who’ve even lost their life during the latter.
- The Creator has structure and discipline for each realm. Human beings know their purpose and destiny. Spirits surely will know theirs. We need to leave them to work it out, that’s why our parting prayer of Rest In Peace. When we initiate or respond to spirit communication, we can be sure it is not going to be a mere switch on then switch off affair. Will you be able to handle what you’ve unleashed?
- In the final analysis, let us ask ourselves this – what are our earthly relationships like; lets dissect and discover? Do we have good communication with co-humans? I believe we need to perfect our communication with each other before we try to tickle our way into tingle territory.