Voices from Beyond
Voices from Beyond
It is an experience that is almost universal; one day everything seems to be going fine, it’s a perfectly normal, ordinary day when all of a sudden, you hear a voice. It doesn’t have to be much of a voice, perhaps a name is called out or a shout is heard. It could be a phrase or a sentence. Maybe the voice has more to say, maybe less, but the fact is, you cannot find the owner of the voice. It seems to come from nowhere. Is it your imagination? Is it a trick of the mind, turning a normal, natural sound into something more? Or is it something that is beyond our comprehension?
Throughout recorded history there have been cases reported of strange noises, music, and voices where the source cannot be located. Many times, in earlier days, the people reporting the phenomena were almost instantly reported as lunatics or mad-men who would be committed for their safety and the safety of those around them. Whether through the guise of a religious experience or something that occurred during the ordinary course of a day, people kept hearing voices, music, and other strange noises.
Consider the case investigated by Edmund Parrish. Investigating a patient, Parrish noted that the subject claimed that every tree that he passed seemed to be speaking out to him. There were voices all around yet nothing seemed to be coherent or to make sense. Some of these could easily be described as natural sounds that his mind was distorting but yet he heard things that others couldn’t describe or understand. There were voices around this patient that haunted him until the day he died.
The great stories and epics of old are filled with instances of voices from beyond. Many heroes have heard from a ‘god’ or other voice from beyond telling them to start a journey or lead a revolution. People like St. Joan who heard the voice of the Archangel Michael guiding her or St. Francis of Assisi who heard a voice telling him to rebuild a church. These people, listening to voices that they heard, went on to do great things, pointing to the disembodied voices as being the starting point for their actions.
Another interesting case is the one that occurred to the Dagg Family in Clarendon, Quebec. Percy Woodcock, an investigator, visited the family in late 1889. Woodcock was taken by the family’s adopted daughter Dinah to a shed where she claimed to have seen a strange man. Upon entering the shed, Dinah called out, “Are you there Mister?” To Woodcock’s surprise, a voice replied, coming from what seemed to be the middle of the empty shed. The voice was clearly audible, and spoke in a deep, gruff tone. The voice cursed at them and made threats of physical violence towards them. Woodcock and Dinah searched the shed but found no one else inside.
Not all voices and music from beyond are sinister though. Throughout much of Celtic legend, much of the music is said to have been heard where no one was seen playing. Poetry and stories are said to have been told by voices from beyond that were transcribed and passed on, until the people telling the stories no longer knew where the stories had come from, assuming that someone had created them, not transcribed them from a disembodied voice.
In my hometown area in western Minnesota there is a house where three people have claimed to hear what sounds like a radio playing somewhere off in a different room. At first they don’t pay much attention to it, but then, as they realized that they are alone in the house and the radio wasn’t playing earlier, they start to investigate where the music is coming from. Upon realization that there is music coming from somewhere in the house, the music seems to stop. All the people who’ve heard the music describe it as the same, it’s just loud enough so that you can tell something is there, but not loud enough to actually identify the song being played or to tell what room it is being played in. What kind of explanation could there be for this phantom music? If it was only one person hearing it then it would be easily written off as a hearing problem, ringing in the ears or an active imagination. But with three people all describing the same thing, independently, then it raises other questions.
The world is full of mystery and intrigue. There are things that no matter how much scientific knowledge we gain, seem to be just outside our grasp. With more sensitive monitoring equipment and more powerful computers, we just might be able to figure out where these voices are coming from; in our heads or from something beyond. Until then, we can only guess as to their origins.
To see how voices from beyond has influences my science fiction writing, head over to www.leifericksonwriting.com and buy my books today.
Terence Hines. (2003). Pseudoscience and the Paranormal. Prometheus Books. ISBN 978-1573929790
Lange, R., Houran, J. (1998). Delusions of the paranormal: A haunting question of perception. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 186 (10), 637–645.
James Houran, Rense Lange. (2007). Hauntings and Poltergeists: Multidisciplinary Perspectives. McFarland. ISBN 978-0786432493[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]