; Phantoms and Monsters: Pulse of the Paranormal

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Just the Facts?: Happy Thanksgiving! -- Blame the 'Cursing Stone' -- Yeti Evidence Falls Flat

'Leave the stone alone!'

A councillor who blamed a 'cursing stone' for local disasters and said the monument should be destroyed has died after a sudden illness.

Jim Tootle, 59, hit the headlines for suggesting that the cursing stone might have been responsible for the Cumbria floods of 2005 and the 2001 foot-and-mouth outbreak.

The huge granite stone is situated in an underpass close to Carlisle Castle, and features just over 300 words from a 1,069-word curse thought to be the world's longest.

It was designed by artist Gordon Young and erected in 2001 as part of nearby Tullie House Museum's Millennium Gallery.

The curse dates back to the 16th century and was invoked to ward away the 'Border Reivers', robbers and highwaymen who blighted the area 500 years ago.

Mr Tootle was a Liberal Democrat councillor on Carlisle City and Cumbria County councils.

He suffered a suspected cardiac arrest in the Cumberland Infirmary on Friday while receiving kidney dialysis.

Mr Tootle had a reputation for plain speaking and would sometimes vote against other members of his party.

Councillor Nan Farmer, leader of the city council's Lib Dem group, said: 'Jim would stand up and speak about what he believed in.

'He certainly had the courage of his convictions.'

Mr Tootle attracted worldwide media attention in 2005 by suggesting the cursing stone had caused a number of local disasters.

He called for it to be removed or destroyed but the suggestion was thrown out by city councillors.

Former group leader Trevor Allison said: 'I will miss him. His approach to his illness was extraordinary. He was stoical, cheerful even.'

Until recently, Mr Tootle worked as a resident-involvement officer for Impact Housing.

He leaves a wife Janet, son Alisdair and daughter Katriona.

Mr Tootle was elected to Carlisle City Council in 2004 and to Cumbria County Council in 2009.

He had been deputy leader of the city council's Lib Dem group since 2009.

His death will trigger by-elections on both authorities. - dailymail

The Reivers: The Story of the Border Reivers


Although the cursing stone was erected only ten years ago, its text is taken from a curse made in 1525.

The curse was written by Gavid Dunbar, archbishop of Glasgow, to protect against the violent Reivers.

In modern English, it reads:

I curse their head and all the hairs of their head; I curse their face, their brain, their mouth, their nose, their tongue, their teeth, their forehead, their shoulders, their breast, their heart, their stomach, their back, their womb, their arms, their leggs, their hands, their feet, and every part of their body, from the top of their head to the soles of their feet, before and behind, within and without.

I curse them going and I curse them riding; I curse them standing and I curse them sitting; I curse them eating and I curse them drinking; I curse them rising, and I curse them lying; I curse them at home, I curse them away from home; I curse them within the house, I curse them outside of the house; I curse their wives, their children, and their servants who participate in their deeds; their crops, their cattle, their wool, their sheep, their horses, their swine, their geese, their hens, and all their livestock; their halls, their chambers, their kitchens, their stanchions, their barns, their cowsheds, their barnyards, their cabbage patches, their plows, their harrows, and the goods and houses that are necessary for their sustenance and welfare.

May all the malevolent wishes and curses ever known, since the beginning of the world, to this hour, light on them. May the malediction of God, that fell upon Lucifer and all his fellows, that cast them from the high Heaven to the deep hell, light upon them.

May the fire and the sword that stopped Adam from the gates of Paradise, stop them from the glory of Heaven, until they forebear, and make amends.

May the evil that fell upon cursed Cain, when he slew his brother Abel, needlessly, fall on them for the needless slaughter that they commit daily.

May the malediction that fell upon all the world, man and beast, and all that ever took life, when all were drowned by the flood of Noah, except Noah and his ark, fall upon them and drown them, man and beast, and make this realm free of them, for their wicked sins.

May the thunder and lightning which rained down upon Sodom and Gomorrah and all the lands surrounding them, and burned them for their vile sins, rain down upon them and burn them for their open sins.

May the evil and confusion that fell on the Gigantis for their opression and pride in building the Tower of Babylon, confound them and all their works, for their open callous disregard and opression.

May all the plagues that fell upon Pharaoh and his people of Egypt, their lands, crops and cattle, fall upon them, their equipment, their places, their lands, their crops and livestock.

May the waters of the Tweed and other waters which they use, drown them, as the Red Sea drowned King Pharaoh and the people of Egypt, preserving God's people of Israel.

May the earth open, split and cleave, and swallow them straight to hell, as it swallowed cursed Dathan and Abiron, who disobeyed Moses and the command of God.

May the wild fire that reduced Thore and his followers to two-hundred-fifty in number, and others from 14,000 to 7,000 at anys, usurping against Moses and Aaron, servants of God, suddenly burn and consume them daily, for opposing the commands of God and Holy Church.

May the malediction that suddenly fell upon fair Absalom, riding through the wood against his father, King David, when the branches of a tree knocked him from his horse and hanged him by the hair, fall upon these untrue Scotsmen and hang them the same way, that all the world may see.

May the malediction that fell upon Nebuchadnezzar's lieutenant, Holofernes, making war and savagery upon true Christian men; the malediction that fell upon Judas, Pilate, Herod, and the Jews that crucified Our Lord; and all the plagues and troubles that fell on the city of Jerusalem therefore, and upon Simon Magus for his treachery, bloody Nero, Ditius Magcensius, Olibrius, Julianus Apostita and the rest of the cruel tyrants who slew and murdered Christ's holy servants, fall upon them for their cruel tyranny and murder of Christian people.

And may all the vengeance that ever was taken since the world began, for open sins, and all the plagues and pestilence that ever fell on man or beast, fall on them for their openly evil ways, senseless slaughter and shedding of innocent blood.

I sever and part them from the church of God, and deliver them immediately to the devil of hell, as the Apostle Paul delivered Corinth.

I bar the entrance of all places they come to, for divine service and ministration of the sacraments of holy church, except the sacrament of infant baptism, only; and I forbid all churchmen to hear their confession or to absolve them of their sins, until they are first humbled by this curse.

I forbid all Christian men or women to have any company with them, eating, drinking, speaking, praying, lying, going, standing, or in any other deed-doing, under the pain of deadly sin.

I discharge all bonds, acts, contracts, oaths, made to them by any persons, out of loyalty, kindness, or personal duty, so long as they sustain this cursing, by which no man will be bound to them, and this will be binding on all men.

I take from them, and cast down all the good deeds that ever they did, or shall do, until they rise from this cursing.

I declare them excluded from all matins, masses, evening prayers, funerals or other prayers, on book or bead; of all pigrimages and alms deeds done, or to be done in holy church or be Christian people, while this curse is in effect.

And, finally, I condemn them perpetually to the deep pit of hell, there to remain with Lucifer and all his fellows, and their bodies to the gallows of Burrow moor, first to be hanged, then ripped and torn by dogs, swine, and other wild beasts, abominable to all the world.

And their candle goes from your sight, as may their souls go from the face of God, and their good reputation from the world, until they forebear their open sins, aforesaid, and rise from this terrible cursing and make satisfaction and penance.


Victor Oropeza's Bigfoot Video

Arizona BigFoot Footage

Statement with video:The footage that told me that it could be done during the day. With hard work and persistence, a clear head and a rabid passion, I knew that I could capture digital media of a bigfoot. None of this is done through luck.
I devote my life to bigfooting. And I share everything For Free! Since 2008, I have been giving this everything that I possibly could, and I still do to this day.

You're looking at the eye of a bigfoot/sasquatch creature. No games, No Hoax, No Bull! I guarantee that my subscribers will get none of that from me. Arizona Style!

NOTE: no comment


Yeti Evidence Falls Flat: Scientist Says Local Officials Staged Siberian Snowman Hunt For Publicity

A group of international scientists made headlines last month after suggesting they were "95 percent" certain they'd found evidence that the elusive Yeti -- or fabled Siberian Snowman -- really exists.

But one scientist who was part of the big snowman hunt tells The Huffington Post that local Siberian officials staged the entire snowman scenario -- all for publicity.

"It was a very awkward feeling because here I was a guest and this was clearly orchestrated," said Idaho State University anthropologist and anatomist Jeffrey Meldrum.

And now, as researchers claim that twisted tree branches are possible proof of the Yeti's existence, Meldrum is offering a word of caution.

"Since nobody has demonstrated to me any corroborating evidence, like footprints in direct association or hair intertwined in any of these [tree] structures, I'm much more inclined to think the majority of them are just natural occurrences," he said.

Meldrum was among a handful of scientists and investigators invited to Russia's Kemerovo region -- about 2,000 miles east of Moscow -- in October to look at possible evidence of a large, hairy primate, known as the Yeti or Siberian Snowman.

"I was happy when I learned there was interest by Russian government authorities to promote and sponsor the organization of a [Yeti] institute," Meldrum said.

"I thought that, at the very least, the official recognition of an institute -- of the need and the desirability to investigate these claims -- was a positive step," he said.

Meldrum, author of "Sasquatch: Legend Meets Science," was the only American scientist in the group that traveled to a huge cave in Kemerovo, home to an alleged Yeti.

His suspicions began when trip organizer Igor Burtsev, head of the Yeti Institute at Kemerovo State University, told the group that it might find some remains of Yeti footprints in the cave.

"Somebody found a right footprint," Meldrum said. "But I thought it was a little vague and not real distinct. It was a pretty expansive cave and there could've been footprints all over the place, if there was something tromping around in there in the sand."

When Meldrum decided to go farther into the cave on his own, followed by a cameraman, "one of the regional government people saw us and rather harshly called us back, stopping us from going any farther back."

"I thought that was kind of odd, and then someone picked up a little tuft of hair that was apparently pressed into the footprint. At that point, I wasn't comfortable with the situation and had an inkling of what might be happening," Meldrum said.

Adding to his growing feeling that the entire situation was a setup, the respected American scientist (pictured at right, holding a replica of a Bigfoot cast from Washington state) said that the trail leading to the cave had been well maintained and showed signs of being frequently visited, including graffiti on the cave walls, remnants of some campfires and discarded trash.

Another piece to this problematic scenario was that as soon as Meldrum suggested he couldn't place any credibility in just one footprint, suddenly another one was found -- another right footprint. When he looked a little further, he found a third print, "but it was also a right and I said it would be nice to find a left one, and I said facetiously, 'Is the Yeti playing hopscotch here?'" (See Meldrum inside the cave in the video at the top of this story.)

"But my point was simply that if this was a spontaneous line of tracks, we'd expect to see both rights and lefts," he said. "And why is it that the tracks are only leading out and none are leading in?

"If an animal is occupying this cave, it's not going to sleep on this cold, wet ground. It's going to have some kind of a bed or a nest of sorts. And just as if on cue, I'd barely got the words out when one of the [officials] raised his torch beam and there, under a little alcove on the side, was this neat little fern bed or mattress or nest."

It was at this point that Meldrum said he realized that everything that happened in the alleged Yeti lair was likely completely staged for his and the media's benefit. The publicity certainly wouldn't hurt Kemerovo's skiing tourism activities.

"These prints were too odd-looking and I said to everyone that if something was sleeping in here, this nest would be compacted and pressed down," Meldrum said. "We should be able to quickly find hair among the things here, and I can't see anything."

Meldrum added that Burtsev then dove onto the ferns in front of the cameras. "And I thought, 'Well, that's very scientific, Igor, you've just contaminated the whole scene.'"

Most of the participants and press were excited about what was found in the cave, which led to the headlines declaring they were "95 percent" certain of Yeti's existence.

But Meldrum was disappointed with the entire incident, including talk of how fallen and twisted trees across the trail were assumed to be an intentional action on the part of a Yeti or a wild snowman, obstructing the trail. He thought the close proximity of the twisted branches was suspiciously convenient.

Despite his skepticism of what happened in Siberia, Meldrum nonetheless believes there's been enough real and anecdotal evidence over many decades that suggests there might really be tall, hairy, unknown hominids in the Siberian region with similar characteristics to reported Bigfoot and Sasquatch sightings found elsewhere in the world.

With so much hype over alleged footprints, broken tree branches and a nest of ferns, let's not forget what would constitute the ultimate proof in the decades-old hunt for the Yeti or its North American hairy cousins: a body, dead or alive. That would open up a whole new branch of hominid science and would certainly quiet the skeptics.

And now that he's voiced his dubious opinion on the events of the Siberian Yeti hunt, Meldrum said he doubts he'll be included in any future Russian field trips.

"They were talking about having this conference become an annual event," he said, "and I'm quite confident I will not be invited back." - THP


Podcast: 'The Haunted Collector' John Zaffis on 'Beyond the Edge' Radio

After a busy schedule on the road, filming the new hit television show "The Haunted Collector" on the Syfy channel, 'The Godfather of the Paranormal' John Zaffis returned to BTE Radio this past Sunday to spend time with Eric and Lon and update everyone on what's been going on.

Shadows of the Dark

The Encyclopedia of Demons and Demonology