Prophet's Death Blamed on Mermaids
A self-styled prophet on Wednesday drowned in a river during a cleansing ceremony in Epworth, giving residents quite a scare.
The prophet, Simbarashe Kamupondera, 31, of Nyeredzi Nhatu apostolic sect, met his fate around midday as he was attending to a congregant at the Ruwa River banks when he was swept away by a strong current.
However, the family believes Simbarashe is still alive claiming he was abducted by mermaids known asnjuzu in vernacular.
“Simbarashe came to stay with us a month ago. He has been telling us that he had a spirit of a mermaid.
“He also said that a prophet had prayed for a cloth that he gave him to always tie when getting into the waters. Yesterday he bought a new cloth after he had written his name on the old one saying that he could no longer use it.
“He tied it today before he got into the water,” Magma Mutingwende, Simbarashe’s sister-in-law said.
Magma also said that Simbarashe was praying for a female congregant when he was swept away.
The father of two is also said to have frequented the river several times taking a bath and baptising people.
“Vaenda vari mumweya vachinamata nendimi. We realised that he needed help when he started saying come and get but when we tried to swim to where he was, he was submerged in water.
“We believe that he was taken by a mermaid and we are not going to mourn him because we know that he is coming back,” Magma added.
When this news crew arrived, Magma was getting ready to leave the river banks with her two friends who are also congregants of the small apostolic sect as it was getting dark. Her husband Thomas had accompanied the police to the police station.
“We have not told his wife as yet and we know that he is coming back,” Magma added.
Police details at the scene said they were waiting for the Aqua Unit to attend to the scene. - News24Zim
Do demons exist?
Demonology represents a fascinating case of evolving beliefs among Jews. While once widespread, explicit belief in demons has become limited to distinct groups. The question whether Judaism endorses such a view, however, has been a heated debate for many centuries.
In a few passages, the Bible disparages non-Jews who worship demons. “They sacrificed to demons, not gods, gods they had never known” (Deuteronomy 32:17). These passages might contend the Torah denies the existence of demons, or alternatively acknowledges their existence but disparages their worship. The latter approach was seemingly adopted in the Talmud, which contains extensive discussions regarding the origin and nature of these evil spirits.
In legal contexts, the Sages banned consuming things in pairs for fear of demonic harm, while discussing whether an admonition issued by a demon makes a sinner liable to punishment. Additionally, rabbinic literature attests to scholars performing exorcisms.
As Rabbi Natan Slifkin has documented, many medieval rationalists denied the existence of demons. Maimonides and Gersonides all contended that this belief was false or illusory. Rabbi Yaakov Anatoli lamented that many Jews, laypeople and scholars alike, believed in such “nonsense,” while one Provencal scholar, Rabbi Levi ben Avraham of Villefranche declared, “An enlightened person should not believe everything he is told, even if the person telling it is a scholar and pious person.”
Yet he also stated one should believe all matters accepted from our prophets and sages, thereby raising the question of how to interpret the sources which seemingly affirm the existence of demons. To solve this problem, Rabbi Menachem Hameiri regularly interpreted the talmudic passages as referring to evil thoughts or psychosomatic problems, but not objective entities, also contending that this debate should be decided by empirical investigation.
These approaches were thoroughly scorned by many medieval scholars, who believed Jewish tradition clearly affirmed the existence of demons. Figures like Rabbi Yehuda Halevi and Moshe Taku lambasted those who abandoned a clear-cut rabbinic belief because of their philosophical inclinations, with the latter even declaring that Rabbi Avraham Ibn Ezra was killed by demonic dogs because he denied their existence.
Centuries later, the Vilna Gaon decried that Maimonides had been “led astray by accursed philosophy” to deny demons, amulets and other occult phenomena. Beyond invoking tradition, Nahmanides asserted there was eyewitness testimony for their existence, even as they generally possessed undetectable bodies.
Demonology was a hallmark of kabbalistic and other mystical literature. Yet even a couple of philosophers, including Rabbi Hasdai Crescas, affirmed (esoteric) knowledge of demons with a combination of rationalizations and appeals to tradition. In the 17th century, Rabbi Menasseh ben Israel asserted he saw no difference in affirming the existence of God or demons, both of which were invisible entities attested to by tradition.
A few scholars denied the existence of demons, yet maintained the Sages had not erred. One prominent strand, adopted by Rabbi Shlomo Luria but already anticipated in early medieval texts, asserted that demons and evil spirits were prevalent in antiquity but no longer existed. This position allowed many halachists to circumvent any laws relating to demons without having to nullify them. Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Kotzk even allegedly maintained demons existed, until Maimonides denied their reality – at which point God, in respect to this scholarly master, indeed removed them from the world! In the 19th century, Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch contended this dispute was irresolvable, and that people may adopt either position, since they must anyway distance themselves from engaging in the occult. Many traditionalists, I suspect, have taken this route which, consciously or otherwise, allows them to subtly reject demonology without having to disavow passages in classic rabbinic texts.
Yet such an approach might prevent contemporary believers from confronting an important challenge to faith. Many scholars rejected demonology because they found alternative naturalistic explanations for many phenomena in contemporary science. The mechanic universe depicted by modern science, however, also poses a threat to the belief in anything supernatural or divine.
Confronting demonology presents the opportunity of affirming our belief in God, even as we accept the findings of modern science. The writer teaches at Yeshivat Hakotel, directs the Tikvah Israel Seminars for posthigh school students, and is a junior research fellow at the Israel Democracy Institute. - JPost
June Field has been working as an international medium for more than 20 years. She’s worked with thousands of people, helped find a convicted murderer and seen off 70,000 other hopefuls in a television competition show to be crowned the world’s greatest psychic.
Perhaps, more importantly, she’s also from Dundee.
June claims to be able to speak to the dead and says that she first started to feel like she had psychic abilities as a youngster living at home.
“I’d see people in my room at night as a young teenager. At first it was quite frightening and I’d make my Dad sleep in my room so I could share with my mum.
“I was born with this ability. It’s not something I decided that I wanted to grow up and do. I’ve always felt things, heard things.
“At first I didn’t want to do anything with it but then I went to a spiritual church where a lady called Jenny Brown, who has since passed, recognised my ability and took me under her wing.”
June has come a long way since then and, although she says her 20 year journey has been exciting, there are two highlights that stand out.
Just over a year ago, in December 2012, June was crowned queen of the psychics on a Ukrainian TV show watched by 34 million people. Like the rest of the 70,000 contestants from around the world, June faced a series of challenges designed to test her abilities.
Ranging from communicating with dolphins and finding hidden microphones to reading DNA, none of the tasks were what you might call ‘simple’.
Once a week for three hours, over the space of 12 weeks, June appeared on Ukrainian TV show ‘International Battle Of The Psychics’ and it was here that she inadvertently aided the local police in an ongoing murder investigation.
“During one of the tasks we were asked to hold onto a necklace that belonged to a dead girl and her father was sitting opposite me,” explains June.
“All we were told was that she was dead. I held onto the necklace and described the murder scene I saw. The police asked to see me afterwards because I described it so well but hadn’t been there.
“I described her murderer and said he had a tattoo on his shoulder, a scar on his hand, that he drove a yellow car and smelt of oil.
“This all aired as one of the shows and I was back home for about nine months before the news that he’d murdered again came out. He was caught and it was discovered that he did in fact have a shoulder tattoo, a scar on his finger and that he drove a yellow taxi too - so he even smelled like oil.
It turns out that, after being caught, the criminal confessed to trying to get his tattoo removed after June's description had been released to the public, saying it had been “99% accurate”.
Although these developments did come after June had finished appearing on the show, the apparent detail she was able to provide during her readings on TV had started to get her noticed by the show’s judging panel, which included the world-famous Uri Gellar.
“Gellar told me that he’d never seen somebody be so specific in their descriptions,” June continued.
“He even singled me out and said people should vote for me. He decided to support me and he was a really nice guy, very knowledgeable too.
“I remember watching him with my parents and I never thought I’d end up working with him down the line.”
What Gellar failed to compliment June on was the fact that she managed to pass every single challenge, the only person involved in the competition to do so.
In fact, so convincing were her descriptions during all challenges that June alone managed to secure 50% of the public vote in the final episode, blowing away her rivals comfortably to win the top prize.
STV produced a news package on the story at the time and you can watch highlights from the Ukrainian show, and hear from June herself, in the video below.
Whether clairvoyance is your type of thing or not, it’s hard to deny that June’s abilities certainly seem to have left an impression on many, many people.
After all, fending off competition from 70,000 competitors is never easy, especially when you're required to chat up dolphins to do so.
And it all started right here in Dundee. - STV
I was given a message...
Rabbithash, KY - 7/2004 - unedited: When I was driving to work around 11:15 pm a thought came in my mind that asked me "Would you like to see me?" I was in the middle of no were alone. I just had this feeling that this was from God so I said "sure I would like to see you" but in the back of my mind I considered that it could be something else. Nothing else happened right then so I shrug it off and continued to drive to work (I am a security guard) . I started my shift. Around 2:00 or 3:00 a.m. another thought came in my mind like the first that asked me if I wanted to make up a story about God coming to see me. I thought for a second yes but I know that that was not my thought, that some how that thought was also put in my head at the same time (this sounds strange but I am telling you the truth I think it was a test to see if I was honest)and I over rode the thought and said "NO I can't do that to God". I looked out the window and noticed a large grasshopper sitting on the fence about 12 feet away from me. As I looked at the Grasshopper an E.T. faded in between me and the grasshopper only about 6 feet away just outside the window (I got a really good look at him)and gave me a message then faded back out. He said the message was from God. I later gave the message to a local church and tried to get them to help me figure out what had happened but they wouldn't help me. They said that they thought I was crazy (they referred me to a mental hospital). That really hurt, here I was going to the only place I thought I could count on for help with something spirit related and they said that. I would like to add that since this has happened I have never thought more clearer and my memory has improved five times since. I have also noticed that I understand Bible and am currently figuring out its mysteries. I believe that I have indeed seen Jesus. I am willing to take a lie detector test and any other test to prove that I am telling the truth about this. While this was happening to me an intense fear overtook my whole body. The E.T. said that this is a side effect of the way that they communicate and don't be afraid. I have noticed that they can give you a long message in a very short amount of time. Since this has happened I have had a couple of these visit mostly at night in my sleep where they have downloaded a bunch of information about the Bible in my head. Now I know when they are around because of this intense fear when they communicate, but they have not showed there self since this first visit (I would be able to explain better in person about this fear and what it means). I would give you the message myself but I was told by them not to give out the message because I messed up and accidently changed it when I keep trying to get help from the church. I will tell you what churches I gave the message to so you can get a copy of it if you like. I would like to add that I have no doubt that this was indeed Jesus. Yeshua. This was an important event and I hope you give me some consideration. Thanks Carl - MUFON CMS
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