Afterlife

Ep 145: Brandon Massullo and The Ghost Studies

 
 

“The Survival Hypothesis is looking at whether your consciousness, soul, spirit, memories, or personality go on after you die. For me, that is the most fascinating part of Parapsychology.”

Paraphrased from our interview with tonight’s guest, Brandon Massullo

 

Background:

Does some element of us exist after we die? Is it possible that a message in a dire time of need could reach a loved one across vast distances without the aid of electronic or mechanical means, with a form of psychic energy either just before or after death? Could our emotional spirit be so intense in a moment of crisis that it leaves an imprint or echo that can reverberate in the ether and be heard, seen or sensed again and again? There have been many reported cases where this seems to have happened, and you may have seen such stories in the news or even have one from your own family. Don't you wish scientists would study these examples in a search for answers to some of the most significant questions of all? Well, some scientists are because this type of occurrence falls under the field of parapsychology and we're fortunate enough this evening to speak with Brandon Massullo. Brandon is a clinical therapist and parapsychologist with graduate degrees in clinical counseling from the University of Toledo and psychological research methods from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland, UK. His research at the University of Edinburgh centered on neurobiological correlates of ghostly encounters, and he studied within the Koestler Parapsychology Unit at the University of Edinburgh under the supervision of author and international lecturer, Dr. Caroline Watt. Brandon has been fascinated by paranormal phenomena for 20 years and has been a participant and featured speaker in numerous paranormal forums and events. Join us for a fascinating discussion of his research into the possibility that our cries, or at least some form of our being, may linger beyond our earthly existence.

 
 
 
 
 

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CREDITS:

Episode 145: Brandon Massullo and The Ghost Studies.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees Wendel; Sound Design by Ryan McCullough; Tess Pfeifle, Producer and Lead Researcher; Research Support from the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2019 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 120: The Grim Reaper

Above image is Death on the Pale Horse by Gustave Doré (1865). It is linked to Revelation 6:8 "The Lamb of God opens the seven seals of a book "written within and on the backside". After the opening of the fourth seal, Death rides into the world. He is the fourth knight of the apocalypse. Hell follows him." This work is in the public domain.

 
 
 

There is a Reaper whose name is Death
And, with his sickle keen,
He reaps the bearded grain at a breath,
And the flowers that grow between.

— From the poem The Reaper and the Flowers by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. First published 1839, in his collection of poetry entitled Voices of the Night.

 
 
 

Location: 

Melaten Central Cemetery
Aachener Strasse 204
Cologne, Stadtkreis Köln, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Home of one of many famous statues of the Grim Reaper (shown in our photos above). This particular statue features him holding an hourglass, but he has no scythe.

 

Background:

When you hear the name, "The Grim Reaper," a very familiar image probably pops into your head. With the black robe and cowl, skeletal face and hands or the visage of a dour corpse, a threatening scythe, and hourglass at its last sands, this is the image the modern, western person thinks of when we personify death. But where did this visual come from? How do we know what death looks like? And since death has always been with us, isn't this image as old as that finality itself? One might think so, but that doesn't seem to be the case. Surely since there have been humans, we have wondered what becomes of us once we die, where do we go when we shuffle off this mortal coil, and how do we get there? What we have found is that yes, we have always created myths and put a face on death in order to help comprehend such an abstract and mysterious concept, but that face has morphed through the ages and varies by culture. In the ancient western world, the concept of a Grim Reaper was more of a psychopomp, a guide that takes the freshly departed to their place in the afterlife. But since we have doubts nowadays when it comes to a more universally accepted idea of an afterlife, perhaps the notion of a ghastly specter that merely extinguishes our spark when our time has come is more relatable. And he's just a mythic character, right? A cartoon? Well not if you ask some folks who claimed to have seen him and lived to tell about it. Whatever the truth, in one sense, in the end, it doesn't matter if you believe at the moment of death that we are whisked away to another realm or it's just "lights out." As the saying goes, whether king or pauper, a Grim Reaper comes for us all.

 
 

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The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

CREDITS:

Episode 120: The Grim Reaper.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees Wendel; Ryan McCullough and John Bolen Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2018 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.