Thursday, May 08, 2014

Illuminati


Among the most persistent claims by conspiracy buffs, the Illuminati are the people who pull the strings on puppeteers who believe they themselves are pulling strings attached to other puppets. Shadows within shadows, Illuminati members supposedly hover in the background among Masons and other groups, including the Priory of Sion, followers of Kabbalah, Rosicrucians and, in a test of theological extremes, the Elders of Zion.

Launched in 1776 by Adam Weishaupt, a Bavarian Jesuit scholar described as “an unpractical bookworm without necessary experience in the world,” the Illuminati (“Enlightenment”) was created as a secret society the true objectives of which would be revealed to its members only after they achieved a “priestly” degree of awareness and understanding. Those who managed to survive Weishaupt’s process of selection and preparation eventually learned they were cogs in a political/philosophical machine regulated by reason, an extreme extension of the founder’s “reason over passion” Jesuit education. Thanks to the Illuminati, people would be liberated from their prejudices and become both mature and moral, outgrowing the religious and political restrictions of church and state.


Achieving this utopia would be a gain not without pain, however. Illuminati members were to observe everyone with whom they came into social contact, gathering information on each individual and submitting sealed reports to their superiors. By this means, the Illuminati would control public opinion, restrict the power of princes, presidents and prime ministers, silence or eliminate subversives and reactionaries, and strike fear in the hearts of its enemies. “In the bosom of the deepest darkness,” wrote one of the movement’s early critics, “a society has been formed, a society of new beings, who know one another though they have never seen one another, who understand one another without explanations, who serve one another without friendship.


From the Jesuit rule, this society adopts blind obedience; from the Masons it takes the trials and the ceremonies; and from the Templars it obtains subterranean mysteries and great audacity.” Without a doubt, this was a force to be reckoned with.

One of Weishaupt’s early strategies was to ally himself with the Freemasons, a move that initially proved successful. Within a few years “Illuminated Freemasons” were active in several European countries. But as details of their true aims escaped, public attitude turned against them until, in August 1787, Bavaria declared that recruiting Illuminati members was a capital crime. This managed to drive the society more deeply underground, but it also persuaded Weishaupt that his vision was seriously flawed. After renouncing his own order and writing several apologies to mankind, Weishaupt reconciled with his Catholic religion and spent his last few years helping to build a new cathedral in Gotha.

During the Illuminati’s limited tenure, tales circulated that it was responsible for the outbreak and progress of the French Revolution, a claim that is almost laughable in view of the group’s emphasis on reason instead of passion. Few events in history were propelled by raw passion more than the overthrow of the French throne.


The short-lived dance between the Illuminati and Freemasons launched a fable that persists among some conspiracy addicts to this day. Various anti-Mason commentators continue to insist that Masters of the Illuminati remain in control of the Freemasons and other secret societies, dedicated to bringing Weishaupt’s original plan for world domination to reality. Yet, while the Illuminati appears as a shadowy presence within or among other secret societies, no one seems able to identify specific acts attributable to them. And, unlike every other secret society to be examined here, no one within the Illuminati has ever broken the oath of silence to reveal its inner workings. If you resort exclusively to logic, you suspect that the Illuminati is a phantom organization with neither goals nor members. If you fear secret societies, you believe they are powerful enough to deny their own existence.


Blood-Suckers!

The legends of the vampires belong to Eastern Europe. – vampire in the Magyar language of Hungary, Nosferatu in Romania. Balkan tales speak of married vampires rises from their graves to terrorized wives and husbands. Unmarried vampires visit young innocence of the opposite sex.

In the anonymous best-seller of 1847, Varney the Vampire or The Feast of Blood, Sir Francis Varney was the first vampire to be upgrade to aristocracy. In Carmilla, published in the 1870, Sheridan Le Fanu introduce us to a beautiful lesbian vampire Carmilla. This story inspired Bram Stoker, who began researching for his novel Dracula.

Dracula was loosely based on Vlad V of Wallachia (Romania). In the 6 year of his rule (1456-62), HE EARNED THE TITLE “THE IMPALER” FOR ALLEDGEDLY IMPALIING TEN OF THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE. HE IS ALSO KNOWN AS Draculaea “son of the devil”.

The Philippine version of the European vampires is known as “Mandurugo”. The Mandurugo looks like young beautiful maidens and unlike their European counterparts, the Mandurugo don’t have fangs and are all females. They have a tongue that turns to a kind of a surgical straw and when a Mandurugo kissed her victim, the tongue will bore a hole inside the victim’s mouth where the monster will suck the victim’s blood.



Shangri-La


James Hilton’s Lost Horizon have depicted a earthly paradise in the Himalayas called Shangri-La. Tibetan legends says that such place exist in the Himalayan mountains called Shambhala. Shambhala is said to be the hidden land where Buddha was initiated into the teachings of the Kalacakra, or wheel of Time. The valley is said to be hidden by snow-capped mountains. Lamas are adamant that travelers cannot simply go to Shambhala, they must be summoned.

Tibetan prophecy holds that Shambhala will have 32 kings, each ruling for a hundred years. The first reigned during the life of the Buddha in the 6th century BCE. The last king is expected to annihilate the forces of evil and bring the golden age to the entire world.

Baron Samedi

 (Baron Saturday, also Baron Samdi, Bawon Samedi, or Bawon Sanmdi) is one of the Guédés, or spirits of Death, related to Baron Cimitère, Baron La Croix and Baron Kriminel. He is also known as one of the loa of the dead. He is also said to be the Lord of the Zombies. 'Samedi' means 'Saturday' in French, though there are alternate etymologies offered. Stylish and sinister, he wears a black tailcoat, glossy top hat and dark eyeglasses. Yep!— he's dressed like an undertaker.

When necromancy is performed, the Baron Samedi is invoked in a cemetery. Three people must be present. They dress the cross on the grave with Baron Samedi's traditional clothes, and burn incense and herbs. Then they request his help. They know the Baron has arrived when the clothes on the cross flap as if disturbed by wind. Some actually claim to see him - a tall black man with white beard and eyeless sockets in his head, though he can see very well.

The participants ask the corpse various questions. If it answers them, the corpse is rewarded by a limited time as a zombie. The zombie acts as the servant of the people who raised him, and performs tasks for them.

Nautical Mysteries



The Mary Celeste set sail for Genoa in Italy from New York on November 5, 1872 with a cargo of 1700 barrels of denatured alcohol. On December 4, the ship was spotted halfway between the Azores and the coast of Spain by the ship Dei Gratia.

When a boarding party was send to investigate, it was found out that the whole ship was deserted. What was strange is that there were no signs of violence discovered. In fact the ship was still carrying plenty of fresh water and food supply. The crew’s belongings lay undisturbed. Only the ship’s chronometer, sextant and the documents concerning the cargo were gone – along with the ship’s seven crewmen, Captain Benjamin Biggs, wife and two-year-old daughter.


The Flying Dutchman has often been sighted for the last 400 years, Sighting occur most frequently south of the Cape of Good Hope. The ship is said to be a messenger of bad omen at the sea. The man from whom the ship takes her name is often identified as Vanderdecken, a Dutch ship master of the 17th century. Legend says that, while rounding the Cape of Good Hope in the teeth of a gale, he swore before God he would enter Table Bay or be damned. His ship foundered and for his blasphemy he was condemned to sail those waters forever. In Wagner’s opera Der Fliegendew Hollander, Captain Vanderdecken is allowed ashore just once every seven years to seek a woman’s love that can redeem him.

Another story identifies the captain as Bernard Fokke, who has struck a bargain with the devil to reach the Indies in 90 days. For that he was condemned forever to sail the waters of the southern capes. The captain stood on the deck of the ship, counting off the centuries on his hour glass,

The legend ended when galleons stop sailing around the sea-lanes of the southern capes in the 1930’s.

Halloween


The word "Halloween," actually has its origins in the Catholic Church. It comes from a contracted corruption of All Hallows Eve. November 1, "All Hollows Day" (or "All Saints Day"), is a Catholic day of observance in honor of saints. But, in the 5th century BC, in Celtic Ireland, summer officially ended on October 31. The holiday was called Samhain (sow-en), the Celtic New year.

According to the History.com, The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids, or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. For a people entirely dependent on the volatile natural world, these prophecies were an important source of comfort and direction during the long, dark winter.

To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities.

During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other's fortunes. When the celebration was over, they re-lit their hearth fires, which they had extinguished earlier that evening, from the sacred bonfire to help protect them during the coming winter.

By A.D. 43, Romans had conquered the majority of Celtic territory. In the course of the four hundred years that they ruled the Celtic lands, two festivals of Roman origin were combined with the traditional Celtic celebration of Samhain.

The first was Feralia, a day in late October when the Romans traditionally commemorated the passing of the dead. The second was a day to honor Pomona, the Roman goddess of fruit and trees. The symbol of Pomona is the apple and the incorporation of this celebration into Samhain probably explains the tradition of "bobbing" for apples that is practiced today on Halloween.

See more Halloween trivia @ this site!

The Grim Reaper



Harvest is associated with death because of the end of growing season. Kronos eating his children was used in a poetic sense for time devouring all things, as in the old saying "nothing lasts forever." and the Grim Reaper carrying a scythe are directly derived from Cronus (Cronus (or Kronos) was the father of Zeus and his siblings.). The Romans identified Cronus with their god Saturn. Saturn, the Sower, was also a god of agriculture. The Roman god's festival, called the Saturnalia, was held from the 17th to the 19th of December and was quite popular.

Cronus and Saturn were also identified with time. Harvest and time might be related in the first place, but some suspect this relationship may have happened because of a confusion between the words Cronus and Chronus.Both of these more modern figures are sometimes accompanied by a crow. Images of the Grim Reaper in engravings in the Middle Ages that show a skeletal figure holding a scythe and hourglass with a crow nearby show this connection.

Kirin


This famous holy animal is of Chinese pedigree, but it has reportedly been seen in Japan as well.

Its descriptions are various, but it usually combines a dragon's face and scaley hide with the body of a hoofed mammal, either a horse or a deer. Its body is often wreathed in flames, and it can breathe fire. It is sometimes depicted with one horn, and thus thought associated with the unicorn in the West, but it is just as frequently adorned with two. The characters "ki" and "rin" are said to represent the male and female of the animal, although which is which is variable.

Though its appearance is fearsome, the kirin's demeanor is wholly pious and gentle, and it avoids harming any living thing, even the grass and insects beneath its feet. This heavenly beast lives for two thousand years and is only seen on earth once a millennium, to usher in a new era, and is said to appear at the birth of great and benevolent leaders. Confucius' mother also purportedly encountered a kirin before her child was born.

The kirin shares its name with the giraffe of the real world, and there is a possibility that the legends of this holy beast were inspired when specimens of that animal were brought back to China from Africa.

The Mothman


The Mothman is the name given to a creature reported in the Charleston and Point Pleasant areas of West Virginia between November 12, 1966

A seven-foot-tall, well built, humanoid monster with giant red, glowing eyes and huge brown wings, a creature who can ascend to the skies from a standing position, and fly at astonishing speeds, and who mutilates pets and instill instant fear in the hearts of all those who see him.

Yet, for over a year in the mid 1960s more than 100 otherwise reliable residents of a small West Virginian town distinctly saw the horrifying figure that terrorized their community. They saw ‘Mothman’.

The weird events connected to the Mothman began on November 12, 1966 near Clendenin, West Virginia. Five gravediggers were in the local cemetery that day, preparing a grave for a burial, when something that looked like a “brown human being” lifted off from some nearby trees and flew over their heads. The men were baffled. It did not appear to be a bird, but more like a man with wings. A few days later, more sightings would take place, electrifying the entire region. It was not until three days later that the creature really terrified the community with a close encounter.

On 15th November, two young couples were driving together near the McClintic Wildlife Preserve, just outside Point Pleasant. The area was known to locals as ‘TNT’, because it had been used as an explosives depot during the Second World War and there were many abandoned chemical and industrial plants in the vicinity. Late in the evening, the two couples approached an old generator plant and saw that its door appeared to have been ripped off. It was then that they noticed two huge red eyes shining out of the gloom at them. These hypnotic, staring discs were attached to what they said was ‘shaped like a man, but bigger, maybe six or seven feet tall. And it had big wings folded against its back’.

As the creature approached, the young group sped off, but as they looked back they saw it take to the air, rising straight up without flapping its wings. It had a giant 10- foot wingspan, and kept pace with the car despite the vehicle reaching speeds of 100 miles an hour. Eventually the group reached the Point Pleasant city limits, where their aerial pursuer turned away and disappeared.

The couples drove straight to the local police station and reported what they had seen. They told Deputy Sheriff Millard Halstead that it followed them down Highway 62 and right to the Point Pleasant city limits. Although local police found nothing at TNT, they accepted the young people had seen something.

Over the next few days reports of a giant ‘bird’ terrorizing locals came into police headquarters with increasing frequency. Car passengers had experienced the creature swooping down on them, and the reception on television and radio sets were being disrupted across the region. One man whose television failed lived in Salom, 90 miles from Point Pleasant. Newell Partridge, a local building contractor who lived in Salem (about 90 miles from Point Pleasant), was watching television when the screen suddenly went dark. He stated that a weird pattern filled the screen and then he heard a loud, whining sounds from outside that raised in pitch and then ceased. “It sounded like a generator winding up” he later stated. Partridge’s dog, Bandit, began to howl out on the front porch and Newell went out to see what was going on.

When he walked outside, he saw Bandit facing the hay barn, about 150 yards from the house. Puzzled, Partridge turned a flashlight in that direction and spotted two red circles that looked like eyes or “bicycle reflectors”. They moving red orbs were certainly not animal’s eyes, he believed, and the sight of them frightened him. Bandit, an experienced hunting dog and protective of his territory, shot off across the yard in pursuit of the glowing eyes. Partridge called for him to stop, but the animal paid no attention. His owner turned and went back into the house for his gun, but then was too scared to go back outside again. He slept that night with his gun propped up next to the bed. The next morning, he realized that Bandit had disappeared. The dog had still not shown up two days later when Partridge read in the newspaper about the sightings in Point Pleasant that night.


Perhaps the most chilling story concerning Mothman happened on 16th November 1966. A young mother was driving to see some friends, who had one of the few houses close to the TNT compound. She said she had seen a ‘funny red light’ in the sky, and, as she arrived at her friends’ house, heard something rustling near her car. ‘It seemed as though it had been lying down. It rose up slowly from the ground.

A big grey thing. Bigger than a man, with terrible glowing eyes,’ she said. Horrified, she grabbed her small daughter and ran into the house, locking the doors behind her. The creature followed,creeping onto the porch and staring in the windows. The police were called, but by the time they arrived, Mothman had disappeared.

Over the next year, Mothman was seen by many witnesses including firemen and pilots. At 17.00 on 15th December 1967 the Silver Bridge linking Point Pleasant to Ohio suddenly collapsed, 46 people died as a result, and the residents of Point Pleasant were forced to deal with real horror rather than mythical beasts. Their creature’s reign of terror paled into insignificance and he was forgotten. However, many people still believe the bridge disaster may have been Mothman’s terrible final act.

Friday the 13th

The thirteenth day of the month is considered "unlucky" if it falls on a Friday, why? That's because 13 was considered a very unlucky number. In Scotland, Thirteen is known as the "Devil's Dozen"--a title characteristic of the worst associations of this much abused number. The Romans considered that the fatality followed the number whenever and for whatever purpose thirteen people gathered together. The superstition surrounding the number 13 could also be linked to Norse mythology. According to legend, 12 gods were at a banquet at Valhalla when Loki, the god of mischief who was not invited, turned up, bringing the total number of guests to 13. He was responsible for the chaos that led to the death of one of the gods so all the gods grieved.

And what about Friday? One reason for this has something to do with the the alleged date of Jesus' crucifixion which was a Friday, but the belief in its ill luck probably goes much farther back in history and may have something to do with the sacrifices offered to the goddess Friga (or Frigg, Frigga)in Norse mythology. She is said to be the wife of Odin, and is the "foremost among the goddesses".

Other thinks that the unlucky day was connected on October 13, 1307. It was the day when officers of King Philip IV of France carried out mass arrests in a well-coordinated dawn raid that left several thousand Templars — knights, sergeants, priests, and serving brethren — in chains, charged with heresy, blasphemy, various obscenities, and homosexual practices.

It is a tradition in Britain that Friday was the conventional day for public hangings, and there were supposedly 13 steps leading up to the noose.

Zashiki-warashi - Japanese Child-like spirit

Zashiki-warashi- sometimes also called zashiki-bokko are a Japanese yōkai, stemming from Iwate Prefecture, similar to a domovoi. The Zashiki-Warashi is fairy of hearth which guards a house and its inhabitants. In addition, some claim that the Zashiki-Warashi is not a fairy but a spirit from its nature.

The name breaks down to zashiki, a tatami floored room, and warashi, an archaic regional term for a child. The appearance of this spirit is that of a 5 or 6 year child with bobbed hair and a red face. Zashiki-warashi can be found in well-maintained and preferably large old houses.


It often appears in fairy tale or native myth. Once a Zashiki-Warashi inhabits a house, it brings the house and its other inhabitants prosperity and happiness, keep them from danger.In the other hand, however, if the Zashiki-Warashi left them,they would possibly fall. The typical Zashiki-Warashi manifests as a little child, usually a little girl, wearing short bob style hair and kimono .


Zashiki-warashi can be found in well-maintained and preferably large old houses. She usually resides in astral space. Only when something happens, i.e. inhabitants are meeting danger, threats come close,or else, it manifests to save the house and inhabitants. It is said that once a zashiki-warashi inhabits a house, it brings the residence great fortune; on the other hand, should a zashiki-warashi depart, the domain soon falls into a steep decline.


To attract and maintain a zashiki-warashi in the home, it is said the spirit must be noticed, appreciated and cared for properly, much in the manner one would raise a child, though too much attention may drive it off. As the zashiki-warashi is child-like in nature, it is prone to playing harmless pranks and occasionally causing mischief.


They might for instance sit on a guest's futon, turn people's pillows over or cause sounds similar to kagura music to be heard from rooms no one uses. Sometimes they leave little footsteps in ashes. There are different variations as to who can see the zashiki-warashi; usually this is limited to inhabitants of the house, sometimes to children.

Kappa


Kappa ("river-child" ), alternately called Kawatarō ("river-boy" ) or Kawako ("river-child" ) , are legendary creatures; a type of water sprite found in Japanese folklore. However they are also considered to be a part of cryptozoology, due to claims of sightings.

In Shintō they are considered to be one of many suijin (literally "water-deity" ). Most depictions show kappa as child-sized humanoids, though their bodies are often more like those of monkeys or bullfrogs than human beings. Some descriptions say their faces are apelike, while others show them with beaked visages more like those of snapping turtles or with duck beaks. Pictures usually show kappa with thick shells and scaly skin that ranges in color from green to yellow or blue.

Kappa supposedly inhabit the ponds and rivers of Japan and have various features to aid them in this environment, such as webbed hands and feet. They are sometimes even said to smell like fish, and they can certainly swim like them. The expression kappa-no-kawa- nagare ("a kappa drowning in a river") conveys the idea that even experts make mistakes.

The most notable feature of the kappa, however, is the water-filled depressions atop their heads. These cavities are surrounded by scraggly hair, and this type of bobbed hair style is named okappa-atama for the creatures.

The kappa derive their incredible strength from these liquid-filled holes, and anyone confronted with one may exploit this weakness by simply getting the kappa to spill the water from its head. The kappa possesses a deep sense of etiquette, so one trusted method is to appeal to this, for a kappa cannot help but return a deep bow, even if it means losing its head-water in the process.

Once depleted, the kappa is seriously weakened and may even die. Other tales say that this water allows kappa to move about on land, and once emptied, the creatures are immobilized. Stubborn children are encouraged to follow the custom of bowing on the grounds that it is a defense against kappa. In addition, folklore suggests that kappa are masters of Koppo, a bone-breaking technique which they invented.

Kappa are usually seen as mischievous troublemakers. Their pranks range from the relatively innocent, such as loudly passing gas or looking up women's kimonos, to the more troublesome, such as stealing crops, or even kidnapping children.

In fact, small childrens' blood are one of the gluttonous kappa's favorite meals, though they will eat adults as well. They feed on these hapless victims by sucking out the shirikodama (or entrails, blood, liver, or "life force", depending on the legend) through the anus. Even today, signs warning about kappa appear by bodies of water in some Japanese towns and villages. Kappa are also said to be afraid of fire, and some villages hold fireworks festivals each year to scare the spirits away.

Kappa are not entirely antagonistic to mankind, however. They are curious of human civilization, and they can understand and speak Japanese. They thus sometimes challenge those they encounter to various tests of skill, such as shogi or sumo wrestling. They may even befriend human beings in exchange for gifts and offerings, especially cucumbers, the only food kappa are known to enjoy more than human children.

Japanese parents sometimes write the names of their children (or themselves) on cucumbers and toss them into kappa-infested waters in order to mollify the creatures and allow the family to bathe.

There is even a kind of cucumber-filled sushi roll named for the kappa, the kappamaki. Once befriended, kappa have been known to perform any number of tasks for human beings, such as helping farmers irrigate their land. They are also highly knowledgeable of medicine, and legend states that they taught the art of bone setting to mankind.

Due to these benevolent aspects, some shrines are dedicated to the worship of particularly helpful kappa. Kappa may also be tricked into helping people. Their deep sense of decorum will not allow them to break an oath, for example, so if a human being can dupe a kappa into promising to help him, the kappa has no choice but to follow through.

The Nurikabe

The youkai known as the Nurikabe manifests as an invisible wall that impedes or misdirects walking travelers at night. Trying to go around is futile as it extends itself forever. Knocking on the lower part of the wall makes it disappear.

Many stories involving Nurikabe exist from the past, wherein much foot traffic through forests and other confusing areas made it difficult to navigate.

Many living things, humans included, usually sense walls and barriers and navigate around them, even invisible ones such as Nurikabe. Due to this, many who encountered Nurikabe would instinctively navigate around him and find themselves even more lost than before, or they might be forced to take a much longer route than they initially would have chosen.

Nurikabe is rarely seen, and it is said that he usually doesn't make a habit of appearing to anyone. Whether this is bashfulness or simply reluctance to been seen, or perhaps that most humans could not perceive him properly, is unknown. His appearance is said to be similar to any stone wall, although tales vary as to whether or not he has eyes or limbs; some say yes, many, to both, and others say that he is essentially a wall that somehow moves from one point to another and has a consciousness about him.

Although some tales insist that Nurikabe is sticky, and if contacted the victim will be unable to extricate himself and become a part of the wall, this is not consistent with other tales that say Nurikabe can simply be navigated around or through by a sufficiently resolved person. The 'sticky' story likely derives from a feeling of lack of control over one's own path, being lost, but invariably the wanderer finds himself free from the influence. The assimilation factor is likely a horrifying exaggeration for storytelling purposes. It is more likely that Nurikabe, like many youkai, is rendered harmless and mischievous simply by either a respectful and well-intentioned approach, or by a resolve that ignores the nagging urge to try and circumnavigate the wall that doesn't seem to be right in front of your path.

Borley Rectory


The Borley’s ghostly problems began centuries ago.

In 1362 Benedictine monks built a monastery in the little village in Essex, south east England. Local legend says that a monk tried to run away with a nun from the nearby Bures nunnery. Despite having an escape plan organised and a carriage ready to smuggle them away to safety, the two lovers were caught. The monk was hanged, and the nun was bricked up in the walls of the monastery’s cellars.

The modern legend began in 1862, when Reverend Henry Bull became rector of Borley and built the rectory a year later in 1863. Villagers knew of the mournful nun who could be seen, walking sadly round the land near the old monastery – and it seems Reverend Bull grew accustomed to her too.

In 1875 he added a new wing to the rectory overlooking what was known in the village as the ‘Nun’s Walk’ so that he could watch the ghost. However, the nun eventually became an annoyance, particularly as she had a habit of staring in the windows of the rectory, scaring many visitors.

Henry Bull died in May 1892 in the Blue Room of the rectory. His son Harry took over the building and, if anything, the tales of haunted happenings increased. Four of Henry’s sisters saw the nun walking along her path, and in addition to the nun apparition, there were new sightings of a ghostly coach and horses arriving in the rectory drive. Harry Bull died in June 1927, also in the Blue Room; before his death, he claimed to have said he had experienced ‘communications with spirits’, but his passing marked the end of the Bulls’ physical, earthly tenancy with the rectory.

In October 1928 the Reverend Guy Eric Smith and his wife took over residency of the rectory. The Smiths knew about the house’s history and soon began experiencing their own strange phenomena. The haunting phenomena usually began each night in Borley Rectory shortly after Reverend and Mrs. Smith had retired for the evening. They would be lying in bed, and they would hear the sound of heavy footsteps walking past their door. Reverend G. E. Smith soon took to crouching in the darkness outside of their room with a hockey stick gripped firmly in his hands.

Several nights he lunged at “something” that passed their door—always without result. Bells began to ring at all hours and became an intolerable nuisance. Hoarse, inaudible whispers sounded over their heads. Small pebbles appeared from nowhere to pelt them. A woman’s voice began to moan from the center of an arch leading to the chapel. Keys popped from their locks and were found several feet. Objects were moved around the house, lights were switched on and off, stones were thrown, there was even the sound of strange whispers mentioning Henry Bull’s nickname – Carlos. The Smiths found themselves living in what Dr. Harry Price would soon come to call “the most haunted house in England.”

The Smiths finally wrote to the Daily Mirror for help, and the paper dispatched the paranormal investigator, Harry Price, to the rectory.

Price recorded incidents of many unusual activities including inexplicable bell ringing and the strange appearance of a Catholic medallion. The Smiths moved out of the building and then left Borley altogether in April 1930, but the October of that year saw the start of a period Harry Price would refer to as ‘the most extraordinary and best documented case of haunting in the annals of psychical research’. Reverend Lionel Foyster, his young wife Marianne and their adopted daughter Adelaide moved into the rectory and immediately the phenomena worsened.

Marianne faced the worst of the poltergeist attacks – objects were thrown at her, and messages addressed to her appeared scribbled across the walls. One message read, Marianne, please help get. Pleas for help and prayers’. The Reverend Foyster decided to have the rectory exorcised and things settled down for a short time, although the hauntings returned and Marianne was repeatedly thrown from her bed by spiritual forces. Reverend Foyster finally decided to move his family away from the area, and all subsequent rectors have refused to live in the house.

By June 1937 Harry Price himself decided to rent the building and installed a team of observers. On 27th March 1938 a séance was held in the rectory. A spirit voice said the rectory would catch fire in the hallway, that very night and burn down. It did not. Price’s tenancy expired. In 1944, Price returned to the site and was hunting in the cellars when he found the jawbone of a young woman. He believed it belonged to the infamous nun, and gave it a Christian burial.

In late 1938, the Borley Rectory was purchased by a Captain W. H. Gregson, who renamed it “The Priory.” He was not at all disturbed by warnings that the place was haunted, but he was upset when his faithful old dog went wild with terror on the day they moved in and ran away, never to be seen again.

He was also mildly concerned with the strange track of unidentified footprints that circled the house in fresh fallen snow. The tracks were not caused by any known animal, the captain swore, nor had any human made them. He followed the tracks for a time until they mysteriously disappeared into nothingness.

Captain Gregson did not have long to puzzle out the enigma of Borley. At midnight in 1939, the “most haunted house in England” was completely gutted by flames. On 27th February 1939 Captain Gregson was in his library when a lamp in the hallway fell over. Eleven months later than the spirits warned, Borley Rectory burnt to the ground. Witnesses saw strange apparitions dancing in the flames, and the nun’s face was said to be seen staring from an upper window. Gregson testified later that a number of books had flown from their places on the shelves and knocked over a lamp, which had immediately exploded into flame.

Borley Rectory has remained one of the most haunted houses in Britain, but in December 2000, Louis Mayerling, who claimed Borley was a second home to him until it burned in 1939, wrote a book entitled We Faked the Ghosts of Borley Rectory in which he claimed that Harry Price and the world had been taken in by hoaxsters. Mayerling states that he first arrived at Borley in 1918 to find Rev. Harry Bull and his family taking great delight in perpetuating local folklore about a phantom nun and other paranormal activity. According to the author, the Foysters were also in on the hoax, encouraging Mayerling, a teenager at the time, to walk around the gardens at dusk in a black cape.

Mayerling admits that there was one incident he was unable to explain. On Easter in 1935, the acclaimed playwright George Bernard Shaw; T. E. Lawrence, the famous “Lawrence of Arabia”; Sir Montagu Norman, Governor of the Bank of England; and Bernard Spilsbury, the Home Office criminal forensic scientist—all believers in the haunting phenomena at Borley—joined Mayerling and Marianne Foyster for a seance at the rectory.

All at once, Mayerling recalls, all the kitchen bells clanged as one and a brilliant silver-blue light seemed to implode around them from the walls and the ceilings. From his previous experience creating eerie sounds and noises in the rectory, Mayerling knew that it was impossible to make all the bells sound at once and he had no idea what had caused the lightning-like flash around them.

He was, in fact, blinded by the phenomenon and eventually recovered sight in only one eye. Shaw and Norman refused to stay the night after such a violent display of the paranormal, and Mayerling confesses in his book that memory of the experience still set his spine to tingling.

Mayerling’s confession of pranks during the occupancy of the Bull and Foyster families does not explain the extensive phenomena reported by Price’s team of researchers during its year-long observation of the rectory nor the manifestations noted by Gregson after he assumed ownership of Borley. Since the admitted pranksters were not present at the rectory during those years, the authenticity of the haunting of Borley will remain a controversial subject among psychical researchers.

The Mongolian Deathworm

In the sand dunes of the Gobi desert there lurks a creature that is so feared by the Mongolian people they are scared even to speak its name. When they do, they call it the ‘Allghoi khorkhoi’, which means ‘the intestine worm’, because this fat, red, deadly snakelike monster looks similar to a cow’s innards.

This giant worm, measuring up to four feet long, can kill people instantly. How it does it, no one knows. Some believe it spits a lethal toxin, others say it emits a massive electrical charge. However it kills, it does so quickly and can do it from a distance. We in the West have come to call this monster the ‘Mongolian Deathworm’.

It said that the Mongolian Deathworm covers its prey with an acidic substance that turns everything a corroded yellow colour. Legend says that as the creature begins to , it attack it raises half its body out of the sand and starts to inflate until it explodes, releasing the lethal poison all over the unfortunate victim. The poison is so venomous that the prey dies instantly.

Because Mongolia had been under Soviet control until 1990, very little was known about the Deathworm in the West. In recent years, investigators have been able to look for evidence of the creature’s existence.

Ivan Mackerle, one of the leading Loch Ness Monster detectives, studied the region and interviewed many Mongolian people about the worm. Due to the sheer volume of sightings and strange deaths, he concluded that the Deathworm was more than just legend. Nobody is entirely sure what the worm actually is. Experts are certain it is not a real worm because the Gobi desert is too hot an area for annelids to survive. Some have suggested it might be a skink, but they have little legs and scaly skin whereas witness accounts specify the worm is limb-less and smooth bodied. The most probable explanation is that it is a type of venomous snake.

Although the native Mongolian people are convinced of the Deathworm’s nature, it will take more years of research to satisfy the rest of the world’s scientific community.

"First mass" was held at Limasawa?

Magellan didn't go to Limasawa. Or Butuan. The place where Magellan’s fleet anchored and where an Easter mass was celebrated on March 31, 1521 was not Butuan. Or, Limasawa. It was in the island-port named Mazaua. Being an island, it was surrounded by sea water. There is an article at Wikipedia on Mazaua where all the properties of Mazaua–its location, size, kind of port, shape, the name of its king, its flora and fauna, distances from Homonhon to the port, latitude, etc. etc.–are explicitly defined. 

A fairly comprehensive but not exhaustive historiography of the Mazaua issue is contained in an article published in the website of the Italian nuclear scientist and Italian translator of Dr. Jose Rizal, Dr. Vasco Caini. When the page opens scroll down to the article Mazaua. The notion the March 31, 1521 mass was held at Butuan comes from the garbled account by Giovanni - by Vic de Jesus