Raymond Moody, M.D.'s seminal work, "Life After Life," has sold over ten million copies and completely changed how we view death and dying. In the first half, he discussed his latest insights about spirituality and his new work, which explores how his understanding of God has evolved over the years. "In a way, life is a continual spiritual experience. Knowing God isn't just a matter of one day... It's something that unfolds throughout your whole life," he commented. Moody said he engages in prayer at different times of the day and seeks a personal relationship with God outside of formal religion. "The most powerful kind of prayer," he added, "is surrender."
He talked about how he went through a period of despondency and hopelessness at middle age, and "all of a sudden it was like something from above descended on me," and he was enveloped in a sense of "complete compassion and understanding." It was nothing like the "judgmental God" that some of the fundamentalist religious viewpoints portray, he remarked. Moody also described spiritual experiences that revolved around his adopted Native American daughter, and perceptions she had about reincarnation as a young child.
Author Varla Ventura is a lover of all things strange, freaky, and terrifying. In the latter half, she talked about her work documenting the supernatural, hauntings, and séances, as well as stories from Irish lore and legends. In Irish folklore, the fairies are often referred to as "the good people," she cited, "yet the stories don't necessarily show them doing good things." For instance, in one of William Butler Yeats' accounts of fairies and folklore, a man who had defied his father was caught by the fairies, and they made him carry a corpse all night long in search of a proper burial spot.
In Irish folklore, many different creatures could be considered fairies, and they are as diverse as the plant kingdom, Ventura marveled. These beings can inhabitant land or sea, and include mermaids, leprechauns, banshees, and the Pooka (said to bear some resemblance to the alien Grey). She classified mermaids and possibly banshees as "psychopomps"-- creatures that can transport you to the Other Side or afterlife. Interestingly, she noted that the popular American depiction of leprechauns, with vests and bowler hats, was typical of the garb of Irish men of the 19th century rather than anything supernatural. Ventura also related a tale of a curious haunting that happened to her friend at a Santa Fe house. Objects frequently disappeared, particularly bars of soap from the shower. When she was preparing to move out, she discovered way high up in a cupboard, a whole series of dried bars of soap that had somehow been placed there.