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Sun Sep 28, 2014, 01:08 PM

Shermer Experiences an Anomaly

This is actually a rather sweet story, sort of like out of a movie. Scientific American published his account. I think, but am not sure, that he might be regularly published there.

I would guess you're familiar with champion naysayer Michael Shermer: he is the chief materialist reductionist who believes there are no UFOs, no psychic connections, etc.



Often I am asked if I have ever encountered something that I could not explain. What my interlocutors have in mind are not bewildering enigmas such as consciousness or U.S. foreign policy but anomalous and mystifying events that suggest the existence of the paranormal or supernatural. My answer is: yes, now I have.

The event took place on June 25, 2014. On that day I married Jennifer Graf, from Köln, Germany. She had been raised by her mom; her grandfather, Walter, was the closest father figure she had growing up, but he died when she was 16. In shipping her belongings to my home before the wedding, most of the boxes were damaged and several precious heirlooms lost, including her grandfather's binoculars. His 1978 Philips 070 transistor radio arrived safely, so I set out to bring it back to life after decades of muteness. I put in new batteries and opened it up to see if there were any loose connections to solder. I even tried “percussive maintenance,” said to work on such devices—smacking it sharply against a hard surface. Silence. We gave up and put it at the back of a desk drawer in our bedroom.

Three months later, after affixing the necessary signatures to our marriage license at the Beverly Hills courthouse, we returned home, and in the presence of my family said our vows and exchanged rings. Being 9,000 kilometers from family, friends and home, Jennifer was feeling amiss and lonely. She wished her grandfather were there to give her away. She whispered that she wanted to say something to me alone, so we excused ourselves to the back of the house where we could hear music playing in the bedroom. We don't have a music system there, so we searched for laptops and iPhones and even opened the back door to check if the neighbors were playing music. We followed the sound to the printer on the desk, wondering—absurdly—if this combined printer/scanner/fax machine also included a radio. Nope.

At that moment Jennifer shot me a look I haven't seen since the supernatural thriller The Exorcist startled audiences. “That can't be what I think it is, can it?” she said. She opened the desk drawer and pulled out her grandfather's transistor radio, out of which a romantic love song wafted. We sat in stunned silence for minutes. “My grandfather is here with us,” Jennifer said, tearfully. “I'm not alone.”


Read the rest.


p.s. here's a picture of Shermer and Jennifer on their wedding day:

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NJCher Sep 2014 OP
SheilaT Sep 2014 #1
PADemD Sep 2014 #2

Response to NJCher (Original post)

Sun Sep 28, 2014, 09:40 PM

1. Perhaps this experience will open Shermer's mind


to the possibility that we do not live in a completely mechanistic universe.

One problem with many skeptics is that they work so very hard to explain something away rationally, rather than being willing to say some non-rational explanation is best.

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Response to NJCher (Original post)

Mon Sep 29, 2014, 11:38 AM

2. Too bad he didn't publish this in Skeptic magazine.

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