RICK: Welcome to Buddha at the Gas Pump. My name is Rick Archer. Buddha at the Gas Pump is an ongoing series of conversations with spiritually Awakening people, and about spiritually related topics. We’ve done over 600 of them now. And if this is new to you, and you’d like to check out previous ones, go to bat gap comm and look under the past interviews menu. This program is made possible through the support of appreciative listeners and viewers. So if you appreciate it and would like to help support it, there’s a PayPal button on every page of the website. And there’s also a page explaining some alternatives to PayPal. My guest today is Julie bicycle, PhD. Julia is the co founder and director of research at the wind bridge in Research Center. See she received her PhD in pharmacology and toxicology with a minor in microbiology and immunology. And we’re not going to be talking about any of those things today. Because well, because they Julie.
JULIE: I said Oh, no. Oh, I prepared to talk.
RICK: Well, tough. We’re gonna we’re going to talk about spelunking. No, actually, Her current research mainly focuses on mediums, individuals who experience communication with the deceased. Dr. bicyle has published research examining mediums accuracy and their experiences psychology and physiology, and the potential therapeutic application of mediumship readings during bereavement. Her research interests also include spontaneous, facilitated, assisted and requested after death communication experiences, she lives in Arizona with her husband and research partner, Mark, but Kuzey and their two dogs. And the reason that we covered this kind of topic on bat gap. And last week, I interviewed Jim Tucker about reincarnation and I have interviewed people on out of body experiences and you know, various related things is that, I feel that that’s part of the topography of the universe. So there, you know, that we don’t live in a strictly materialistic universe and when the body dies, that’s not the end of us. And even though it might be not be directly germane to the topic of enlightenment, and self realization at all, it is part of the picture and all the religious or spiritual traditions of the world have discussed it. And so I feel like we should discuss it. And it’s not something that I don’t, that I think people necessarily have to believe in. But there’s actually a lot more reason to take it seriously than many people may realize. Because the topic, especially the topic of mediumship is often treated sort of facetiously. I actually interviewed Bruce Joel Rubin, who won the Oscar for the movie Ghost, in which Patrick Swayze sang. I’m Henry the Eighth, I am over and over again to Whoopi Goldberg, who was playing a medium until she agreed to cooperate with him and let him communicate through her than any case, is a serious topic. And Julie baijal has been taking it very seriously for what, like 15 years now studying it.
JULIE: Yeah, I was introduced it around 20 years ago, and I’ve been doing research for at least 15 Yeah,
RICK: yeah. And there are some I found I start with a few nice quotes that I picked up from your books that I read. Here’s one from a Tibetan Buddhist tradition. They say, when you’re born, you cry and the world rejoices. When you die, you rejoice and the world cries. Here’s one from William James. I believe there is no source of deception in the investigation of nature, which can compare with a fixed belief that certain kinds of phenomena are impossible. Here’s one from louds what the caterpillar calls the end, the rest of the world calls a butterfly. And here’s one from Rabindranath Tagore death is not extinguishing the light, it is putting out the lamp because the dawn has come. So those are nice. So how did you go Julie from kind of a, you know, the study that I just described Toxicology and Pharmacology and all that, to getting interested in this topic, making it your career right Really?
JULIE: The short answer is well, I was in grad school, I suffered a personal loss. My mom died from suicide. And so my family is remarkably Catholic. And so I had this idea. I’d been, you know, I’d heard about this place called heaven, but it was very, not concrete at all. And so I never heard of psychic abilities or mediums or anything. And then I was at the time that John Edward was on that show crossing over and I saw him. Yeah. And I thought, well, those people look genuinely moved by what he’s saying. And it seems pretty specific. But I would, I’m a scientist, I’ve always been a scientist, I would have to check that out for myself. So I got a recommendation for a local medium, and I went, and it was very evidential. And I had read a little bit about how fraudulent mediums can fool you. And so I was on the lookout for those kinds of things. And none of them happened. And I got this reading. And it was really profound of like, wait, I just talked to my deceased mother. Like, you know, it was just weird. And as a scientist, I wanted to learn more and more. And there hadn’t been anything done in a long time, really. And so I was like, Well, I think, I think I should look into it. And the universe was like, kick in the pants. Like, here you go, that’s what you’re gonna do with your life now. And all these pieces just fell into place. And in 2008, Mark, and I founded the wind bridge Institute. And then in 2017, we moved all that life after death mediumship research to the new Winbridge Research Center, which is a 501 C three, charity
RICK: great, so people can donate to it if they want to help support it. That would be great. Yeah. Incidentally, I have a friend who lives there in northern Arizona named George George, who happens to be Harry Houdini is great nephew. And I mentioned that because Houdini was really interested in this topic, and really tried hard, I think, to find some credible evidence of it, and I’m not quite sure he ever succeeded. It seems to me that evidence of the continuation of life after death, whether through, you know, mediumship, or out of body experiences, near death experience kind of reports and all could have a major impact on people’s psychology and how they actually view life itself. Not only how they might view death, don’t you think?
JULIE: Oh, yeah, fear of death is so insipid, like, we don’t even know how scared of death we are as individuals. And so you don’t really know how it’s affecting your decision making ability. And like, what, what it’s impacting, like, there’s a theory called Terror management theory where the theory is, because of your fear of death, you know, you’re going to die. So you do not want your worldview to die. And then you try and impose it on others. So when people are reminded of their own death, they’re even more adamant about trying to push their own worldviews on others. And if you’re reminded that, like, hey, maybe there’s an afterlife, and you’ll live on there, they don’t have that tendency. So there are all kinds of examples of that how the fear of death can impact our just moving through the world. So it does have an like, whether you believe that it’s important in your life, because you don’t know anyone that has died, like it is important in your life because of these issues about fear of death.
RICK: That’s very interesting. I’ve often felt that the tendency to be fundamentalist and you know, adamant about one’s perspective, had an underlying fear, you know, either fear, or either a doubt in one’s own belief, you know, and you’re trying to buttress up the belief by pounding it into others, or something like that. So anyway, what you said, I found very interesting. There’s a section in one of the papers you sent me, where you have a conversation at Thanksgiving or something with a hypothetical Uncle Harold. So I thought I’d start maybe by bringing up some of Uncle Harold’s skeptical questions and see how you would answer them. So, first one is there’s no way science can study something like medium.
JULIE: Okay. So science is not a body of knowledge. It is a set of tools for answering questions. So it is a set of steps. Make an observation, make a hypothesis tested level, it’s a bunch of steps. So whatever the if you can observe it, you can use science to investigate it. So we can look Around the world, there are humans providing readings to other humans. And the content of the reading is specific. It’s about a deceased person. And so now there’s all kinds of questions that we can ask about, about that phenomenon. But, of course, science can investigate this. And I’ve been tattooing so for nearly 20 years. So yeah.
RICK: And this is not uncle Harold’s question, this is mine. But when you test the medium, and various information comes through, I presume that some of it is objectively verifiable, like, the medium might, you know, say, well, so and so is saying that, you know, I don’t know, there’s a grandfather clock in her home, and it broke, and it’s set to three o’clock in the afternoon or something like that. And you can give me a better example. And so, in other words, it’s not just a matter of subjective opinion, or belief for things that can’t be verified.
JULIE: That’s correct. So when we bring it into the lab and study it at the Woodbridge Research Center, what we do is a two fold approach that we have optimal environment for the medium and the siddur. And the deceased. And because you can’t like put them underwater and ago, they didn’t do a reading. So it’s all fraud. Like you have to do it, you have to mimic the natural environment as close as possible. That’s one piece. And then the second piece is optimal controls. So you have to eliminate as much as you can the the other explanations for what it could be. So we can let the medium have any access to the sitter to where they can Google them, or look things up. So we’re so the
RICK: center, the center is a living person who wants to contact their mother or something like that. And that’s what the sender means. Okay. Yeah.
JULIE: Sorry. Thank you. Yeah. Yeah. So there’s a lot of terminology in this. Yeah, the sitter is the living person who wants to receive messages, and then we call the deceased person, the discarnate. I’ll try and not use that word. But if I use it, that’s reference. deceased person. Yeah. So in our protocol, which we have nicknamed, it’s quintuple blind, there’s five levels of blinding the medium, this gets really complicated. And I have talked about this, I’ve written about this elsewhere. And they’re free factsheets and other videos and things on our email@example.com, where I go through all of these details, but essentially, we control for all those things. The medium doesn’t have access to the sitter, I serve as a proxy sitter in place of the absent sitter. And I asked the medium specific questions about this covenant. So they can’t just say your father loves you, five stars. Were asking. We asked about the physical description, the personality, hobbies, their activities, and cause of death. And then if the if the discarnate has any specific messages for the sitter, so and then that information is transcribed and scored. And the sitter receives two readings, one is theirs, and one is what’s called a decoy. And they don’t know which is which. So that controls for a psychological phenomenon called reader bias, where maybe you’re going to give the medium the benefit of the doubt because of your personality type. And you’re going to score everything, or maybe you’re very skeptical, like Uncle Harold, and you’re going to score everything is wrong. So it evens out the rater bias across the study. And so we did that 58 times with 20, pre screened mediums. And it did show that at least these mediums can report accurate and specific information about the deceased under blinded controlled laboratory conditions.
RICK: Maybe as we go along, you’ll give us some specific examples of that. And, and I, I understand that you have a fairly rigorous screening process or testing process for these mediums before they can work with you.
JULIE: Yes, we have an eight step screening and certification procedure. So the mediums they’re interviewed, they perform test readings because they can you really do under controlled laboratory conditions. Can you do what you’re saying that you’re doing in your regular practice? They they’re trained on human subjects research protocols on the history of mediumship research on a little bit on grief and bereavement. And then so it takes months and months to complete the it’s eight steps. And at the end, the medium is certified as a Winbridge certified research medium, but it’s very time and resource intensive. So we receive a grant to be able to collect our current team that we have, and then we were we needed to close the screening so we’re not screening any mediums anymore. Okay.
RICK: I’ll just ask Uncle Harold second questions. Yes. I can’t remember what I was gonna As the second question was, but all mediums are frauds and con artists taking advantage of the bereaved, which is what be gold were Berg was doing in the movie coast, you know until Patrick Swayze came along,
JULIE: right? I think in that case of that movie, she was a real medium. But it’s, it may be it’s not easy to do like we’ve put together this team of 22 have retired, there’s no 18. And they can do it on demand, but maybe not everybody can. And so if you’re, if you have to make a living at it, and you’re forced to do it on demand every day, like maybe sometimes you fake it, right, like in the case of that movie, but that we can disprove the the idea that all mediums are Connors by saying I brought these 20 in the lab, I blinded the heck out of the protocol. There was no way they were committing fraud, they had no information and they still were able to provide accurate information. So hypothesis disproven Uncle Harold?
RICK: Yeah, actually, I remembered my other question, which was that a lot of these mediums are professionals at it. Do they have like Winbridge good housekeeping seal of a pre approval thing that they can put on their websites? Once you’ve tested them? And they work with you?
JULIE: Yes, they do. They volunteer their time. No money changes hands. So we don’t pay them. They don’t pay us. But we do. As a service to the public. We have that list available on our website in case people want to go to a medium that’s been vetted by a scientist, they can pick from that list. And we want to reward them meaning like they’re not they’re volunteering their time. They volunteer their time to research and and we want to reward them. We want to give something back. So yeah, they have they have badges for their websites that say Winbridge certified research union.
RICK: Cool. All right. And I had a reading from a read a medium one time and she somebody we know quite well, I don’t want to name her. But it is it didn’t pan out. It’s like she got stuck, like maybe we had our psychic shields up or something. So and you know, didn’t cause me to doubt her ability, because I’ve seen, you know, ample evidence of it elsewhere. But somehow she just hit a wall with us.
JULIE: It’s a really important point. So a mediumship reading involves three people, right? The medium is just one, there’s also the sitter and the deceased person. So if the deceased person, we don’t know how it works, exactly. Maybe they haven’t learned how to do it yet. Maybe they don’t like this particular medium, maybe they don’t think you’re ready to hear from them. There’s all kinds of things out of our control. Yeah, the sitter, if the sitter is really skeptical that can you know, if if you were if I died, and then you were at a medium and you were like, I don’t believe any of this, like, why would I come and talk to you? Right? If you were if you were a skeptic, so there’s that all three of those people have to be at their best on that day. So there are people that we attempted to certify and didn’t didn’t pass the certification that day. And we’re really quick to say they didn’t achieve passing scores with that discarnate on that day with that sitter, whether they are so we can never say they’re not a good medium overall, or they are a good medium. I can’t, I can’t say that the mediums on our team are gonna be good every day with every sitter, because that’s again, it’s three people and people are people and they all don’t get along.
RICK: Yeah. Babe Ruth didn’t hit home runs every time. In our case, I think we were open minded about it. But you know, we were trying to contact our mothers and stuff. And who knows this was years after our mothers had died, maybe they moved on to some other level realm or something and just weren’t around to connect with.
JULIE: Our data has shown that it can be decades later that it is possible that that’s not like, that’s not a thing people have to worry about. Oh, they that that is definitely something that happens the person is no longer available. That’s not what we’ve seen in the research.
RICK: Okay, good. Here’s another question from Uncle Harold. There’s, you’ve already kind of covered this, but maybe you can embellish it a bit. There’s no good evidence for mediumship or psychic abilities.
JULIE: Well, there’s plenty of evidence for psychic abilities. So just a couple years ago, there’s a University in Sweden called Lund University and a psychology professor there. So Cardinia did a review of over 125 published papers and meta analyses and concluded that yeah, there’s ample evidence that psychic functioning is real. And that replicated what university of california statistician just guts had published in 1995, saying the same thing. And her study was I don’t know if it was funded, but definitely encouraged by the CIA and Congress. And so those were her findings that she reported. And in her paper, she said, this is a done deal like this is so obviously real, we can stop studying it, we can stop trying to prove it. And we didn’t, that was 1995. And we keep doing it, we keep trying to show that it’s real. And it is that that the consciousness can access information across space and time that has been repeatedly demonstrated in the laboratory. And then what mediumship is, is a kind of sigh, right? They’re using telepathy, they’re, they’re using mind to mind communication to communicate with the deceased. So it’s a type of sign. It’s interesting
RICK: that the body of human knowledge that even human scientific knowledge is so siloed, you know, so segmented. I’ve interviewed Dean Raiden, a couple of times, and others at the Institute of Noetic Sciences and others in this kind of genre. And, you know, they, they all say, Well, you know, just just so many scientists, perhaps the majority of them, who just won’t even look at our research because they they just say, well, couldn’t be possible, therefore, I’m not gonna waste my time. Kind of this close mindedness. Anyway, any comments on that?
JULIE: Well, it’s like, the world and science have a long history of that sort of thing happening of paradigms being really difficult to overthrow. Right? The earth is the center of the universe, the sun is revolving around the Earth, like it took forever for people to really look at the data and go that no, that’s not how these bodies are moving through space. So it’s no, it’s no wonder this is going to take a bit of you know, that the joke is like, paradigms fall one funeral at a time, right? Yes, this is wait for all the people to die off. Who are the staunch supporters of these, these theories that don’t have the data behind them?
RICK: Yeah, I think I talked about this with Jim Tucker last week, where there’s a word for it, I forget the word. But it’s that is kind of the the stability of paradigms, they can’t it’s good in a sense that they can’t just be sort of overturned with the slightest bit of an anomaly. But on the other hand, they often seem too stubborn, you know, too rigid. And it really takes a certain critical mass of contradictory evidence before they finally give way.
JULIE: Definitely, yeah, it’s so unscientific to say, well, this can’t be real. So I’m not even going to look at the data. Like that’s so the opposite of science. And anyone who calls himself a scientist, and then says something like that. They’re not good. Yeah.
RICK: I’ll just, that’s what David Lorimer and others started the Galileo commission because Galileo’s contemporaries in the church said exactly that thing. They said, Well, you know, Jupiter couldn’t have moons or whatever you say, is, is out there. Because it contradicts church doctrine, therefore, we’re not going to look through your telescope.
JULIE: Right? Yeah. So yeah, you know, this data that I collected 58 readings, 20 mediums that was published in 2015. In a peer reviewed journal, like it’s out there. And it’s, it’s real. So let’s move on as a society and go, Okay, how can we use this to be better people to treat bereavement to, to alleviate fear of death? So that we’re not, again, one of the things is trying to push our belief systems on others?
RICK: Yeah. I think one of the reasons this spooks mainstream scientists so much is firstly, I mean, they would be ridiculed if they actually showed interest in mediumship, or something like that many of them are fear that they would be, but also, you know, the materialist physicalist paradigm is really the predominant paradigm and, and this kind of thing, challenges that, then so what we’re really asking them to do is completely restructure their worldview, you know, from the bottom up, and you can’t blame them for not just saying, Okay, I’ll do that.
JULIE: Yeah, exactly. I mean, there’s the idea that, you know, if people are studying neurology and the brain and we’re going on, it’s really not that important. CONSCIOUSNESS EXISTS separate from that, and its primary, then it sort of discounts their life’s work, of course, you would be hesitant to jump on board with that. And then the other pieces, there’s no funding for this kind of research, essentially, and scientists are people and like to eat and sleep indoors. Of course, they’re gonna stick with the things that can get funding.
RICK: Yeah. And of course, I mean, you know, The widespread acceptance that consciousness is fundamental and, you know, is not merely created by the brain would not put neurophysiologist out of business because it would open up a whole new arena for study. I mean, how is it that the brain is a transmitter receiver for consciousness? You know, how does that work? And where memories stored and all kinds of things like that?
JULIE: Yeah, you’re right. It doesn’t it doesn’t put an end to their life’s work, it opens up a bunch of new avenues.
RICK: Yeah, as a matter of fact, I’d say they’re, they’re going down a dead end, if they’re spending all their time just trying to figure out how the brain creates consciousness. So serratus, wrong hypothesis to begin with.
JULIE: Right? Yeah. And there’s so much data that support all the the sigh, the psychic phenomenon, data support, if, if consciousness can acquire information across space and time, then it can’t be stuck inside the skull. So there’s all that and then there’s all kinds of evidence of like, memory is not stored in the brain. If it was, then when people had strokes, localized strokes, they would lose specific kinds of memories. And that’s not how it works. So there’s all this mainstream evidence that consciousness is not created by the brain. Clearly there’s a relationship between the two. But it’s, it’s yeah, it’s like you said, it’s the I think the better explanation is that the brain is the receiver of this external, non local consciousness that’s primary.
RICK: Yeah, like a radio, that’s such a, it’s a helpful metaphor, you know, the radio doesn’t create the music. And if the radio breaks, the music, doesn’t see some other radio could pick it up. But, you know, it’s a transmitter receiver kind of thing, depending on the kind of radio I read has a question. Have you tested many that have highly developed abilities? For instance, there are a couple of well known mediums that it would appear are extremely accurate. Most of the time, at least the ones you see on television, you don’t know how much is being edited out. But do you find the big range and abilities?
JULIE: What we found when we so we put out, like we had an email list, and we put out an open call who, you know, we’re now screening mediums because we got this grant. And there are already hundreds of mediums on there, and we have the mediums we screened about 25% Couldn’t pass our again, on that day with that deceased person in that sitter. So it’s there, you know, like, we’re, I’m always cautious. I always caution people, when you see a medium, say, or on their website, they go, Oh, I’m 90% accurate. What does that mean, on on a single? Is that your best? Does that mean, on average, is that with a specific kind of death, like that those kind of numbers are really meaningless. So if someone gets paid more and is famous, that doesn’t necessarily mean, it’s just what the market will bear. It doesn’t mean they’re a better medium. So this the team that we put together, we were looking for research mediums, so people who could who understood the limitations of research, we have to follow these rules. And with blinding and all those sorts of things. And and we wanted people who wanted to that were just as interested in the answers as we were, and could dedicate the time and someone who’s famous or has a TV show, they don’t have that time anyway. And it’s not like they would, they would bring more to the team. Because they’re famous, like, what we were looking for were people who could participate on a team in a research setting.
RICK: What’s your impression of some of the famous ones like John Edward or Teresa computo? Or, you know, long I’ve met
JULIE: him? I haven’t tested them in the lab. So I you don’t have any opinion?
RICK: Well, you’ve watched those shows, probably, I mean, no, no, you haven’t?
JULIE: No. Do you think ER doctors watch? Er, I don’t
RICK: know, maybe it’d be like a busman’s holiday.
JULIE: If I watch this, I would just be angry at the the, the the unblinded Miss of it. And yeah, and there’s a lot of editing, right that the way in my understanding the way those shows are shot, right. There’s a camera on the person as they come in the door. So they’ve clearly like, already signed a release before they came in the door. So it’s it’s a lot. It’s a lot less a reality than it seems with all the editing.
RICK: Yeah. Okay. A question came in from Chris on Long Island speaking of Long Island Medium, which is kind of similar to the one I asked but perhaps you can embellish a bit he said, or she, what is the highest level of accuracy achieved by any one Winbridge medium. And are there any readings that really amaze you personally?
JULIE: Yeah, we don’t look at it like that, because it’s not scientifically or statistically, that doesn’t mean anything, the best one or the worst one, that doesn’t mean anything we just want to look at that is the phenomenon real. So we hear we average everything. Hmm. And that’s, that’s the only meaningful number are these averages. And what’s interesting is under these quintuple blinded conditions, on average, the mediums scored 50%. Accurate. But it was that was statistically higher than what the, what the D chord readings were scored, which was only 30%. Accurate. And that’s so because people are only so different. So if you say brown hair, like that’s going to be applicable to more than one person. So 30%. And I’ve talked to other researchers in other countries who do mediumship research, and they found the same exact number, about 30% of any reading could apply to any person, or it could apply to a variety of
RICK: people. Yeah. And I should point out that 50% accurate doesn’t mean 50% Like it like you’d get with a coin toss. Because any degree of accuracy is pretty remarkable. People are coming up with things that they shouldn’t, couldn’t really know through mundane ordinary means.
JULIE: Right? Yeah. So yeah, that’s, that’s a good point. Thank you. That’s the percent accuracy of all the items like so each item gets scored. And then the other thing we do is right, the sitter is given two readings. One is the one that was intended for them. That’s called a target reading. And then one is a decoy, and they don’t know which is which. And they do all of it item scores. And then they give each whole reading a score. And then we say pick which one pick which one of these two that you think is yours. And that would be 50%. Accuracy is what would be expected by chance, but it’s much, it’s not 90%. But it’s higher than that. I’m sorry, I don’t have that number. Off the top of my head, I want to say it’s like 63%. I don’t have that number in front of me. That’s okay. Regardless, it was statistically significant. The difference? Yeah.
RICK: Here’s another question from Uncle Harold. If mediums were actually real, they could win the lottery. Okay. Uncle Harold is ruining your your dinner.
JULIE: Right? Well, you trying to you’re Yeah. That is not something that mediums report being able to do. And that’s not how psychic functioning works. It’s that’s a, that’s a lot of data to pull in six numbers. That’s a lot of data. So even like the best of psychics would have difficulty with it. That is not in line with the psychic abilities that have been demonstrated in the lab. And it’s not something mediums say they can do. So why would you expect that they could do that? Yeah. So it’s just a logic
RICK: that also suggests that they should be able to foresee the future because those numbers haven’t been drawn yet. Right. Right. Although I believe it did tell one story about a medium reading, which did predict a future event, you know, about the Philadelphia Eagles.
JULIE: Oh, yeah, the medium share that, yeah. That she was doing a group reading. And a grandmother came through, I think, and was talking to her daughter, the mother of the grandson, and the grandmother said to the daughter, your son, the grandson is going to be really happy. You know, come February 1 or whatever. And he was a huge Eagles fan. Yeah. So that was her impression was that that the that the deceased had spilled the beans
RICK: on? You guys should have bet on it or something. All right. Another of Uncle Harold’s questions was pretty much already answered. But um, and here’s one. Here’s another final one from Uncle Harold. We’ve already kind of touched on this, but I think there’s more we could say about it. How? How could life after death even happen when the brain dies? That’s it. Game over?
JULIE: Yeah, we did cover that. So the theory of materialism says the brain creates consciousness. So if that’s true, then yeah, with the brain is gone, then consciousness is gone. But that’s not true. I mean, think about how often our cells turnover. Like every night you’re a sixth of your skin gets replaced. And so how could we possibly think that this body is somehow permanent, and this brain is somehow permanent? When our body is turning over all the time, oh, you know, so much of our body is bugs and viruses. So it’s not even all you it’s not does not stable. It’s not permanent. And so this alternative theory to materialism. is called non local consciousness. So that again, that’s the theory that consciousness is like a signal. And the brain is just the antenna. So when the, like you said, when the radio breaks the signal still coming out in the radio station, right, the consciousness can still exist outside of the, whether the brain is alive or not. Yeah, so that’s how we can continue to live after the body dies.
RICK: Yeah, I mean, that point about the bugs in our body, we have the many trillions of cells we have, most of them are non human. The microbiome is sister, but
JULIE: it’s, it’s they equal numbers of them as there are, they’re much, much smaller than us. There are as many of them as there are of us.
RICK: Yeah. Okay. And there’s one other point to throw in here. And this came up in last week’s conversation with Jim Tucker, about reincarnation, because, you know, some people will distinguish, they’ll say, Okay, fine, consciousness is non local. But how is it that an individual entity continues, you know, once the body dies, and so the X, there’s an explanation from Eastern traditions with which they use the word cautions, or sheaths, I’m actually showing a graphic of it on the screen right now. Which means there’s a we have a subtle body, which has various levels to it. And when the flesh and blood body dies, the subtle body continues on. And it’s that’s the vehicle through which we could sort of be communicating with others from the other side, or through which we could reincarnate into another physical body. I just thought I’d throw that in there.
JULIE: Yeah, that’s above my paygrade. I don’t know how this works. That’s not my job. My job isn’t bringing it in the lab and see if it if it can, can demonstrate itself, and it can. And but what that means, in the larger sense, yet again, that’s above my paygrade.
RICK: Yeah. But um, do you ever contemplate it, though, do sort of things like how does this work? I mean, where are they exactly? Are they in a physical place kind of broadcasting to us? Are they in a parallel dimension? And do they have bodies? I mean, do you ask yourself those kinds of questions to Steven personally, if not as a scientist?
JULIE: Yeah, just Yeah, personally, I do. But yeah, once you again, once I had that very first meeting she reading, that’s the only mediumship reading I’ve ever had. But that really opened up like, Well, wait, what else is my science textbook saying that isn’t true? And it really opens up to think, to start to think about these things. And, you know, I have, I have gone on to embrace other modalities of healthcare, I have a I have a chronic neurological disease, I that it’s not managed by Western medicine. So I have to go and look elsewhere. And I’ve learned a lot about a lot of different things, and found the things that work for me. So and that sort of support this idea of non local consciousness, or that at least information is, is can move through space and time.
RICK: So you’re saying that your mediumship studies made you more open minded and impacted your personal life in terms of willingness to look into alternative medicine and things like that?
JULIE: Yeah, I don’t think I’m any more open minded. I’ve always been a good scientist. So I’ve always followed the data. I just never heard of those things. And once you’re, you know, you sort of put a crack in the facade, like, oh, a lot of things can spill through. And so yeah, I just was around people that knew about all these other things and, and, and looked into those because, again, when you have a chronic health disorder, and you’re always on the lookout for something that can help.
RICK: Yeah. A question came in from Wendy fellows in Altadena I think that’s in California, which we’ve kind of answered, but I think there’s a couple more things we could say about it. And her question is, is there any scientific way to prove there is an afterlife? And to me the word proof jumps out at me there because that’s a rather strong word for anything in science.
JULIE: Yeah, scientists don’t try and prove anything. We ask questions and, and get answers. So but we have collected this gets very complicated. But so we’ve talked about whatever medium is doing under blinded conditions, where they’re not using sensory information to get the information about the deceased person. They’re using some kind of sigh. They’re using some kind of psychic ability, sigh, the Greek letter psi psi, that the word size is an umbrella term that that encompasses all these psychic abilities telepathy, clairvoyance, precognition and psychokinesis. So whatever medium is doing is sigh until So once you control for the sensory things you go, it’s definitely side. But there’s two kinds of side that it could be. And these are this gets technical, but there’s one theory is called survival sigh, which is the medium is communicating to telepathically with the survived consciousness of the deceased person. And the other theory is called somatic sigh. It’s based on the word Soma, which means body and that so if they’re using somatic sigh, they’re they’re simply reading the body of knowledge in the psychic reservoir, or the reading from the Living sitter. So we use the word soulmate somatic to represent the sitter and the psychic reservoir. So it’s one either one of those things, and no matter what a medium says, it could be either one. So like that, let’s talk about the Eagles example, right, winning the Super Bowl, she could be using her own pre cognition to say that, or a deceased person could be telling that to her. And there’s no way we can tell the difference based on the content, you cannot determine source from content. So we went a different way. And we ask the mediums about their experiences, and that that field of study is called phenomenology. And there’s all kinds of Phenomenological Research in all kinds of fields. But if you ask a medium, they know what regular psychic functioning feels like, and communication from the deceased feels different. And so we’ve done a number of research studies that qualitatively and quantitatively looked at those differences in the mediums, experiences. And we even did one where the mediums were blinded. So we did do a target, do a reading for this target, and do another reading for the end. One was a living target, and one was a deceased target. And they were blinded, and they didn’t know which was which. And then we said, Okay, now fill out this questionnaire about your experiences. And we found that they experienced love, to a greater degree when communicating with the deceased than when doing a psychic reading for a living person.
RICK: Interesting. Yeah, I would suggest to Wendy that, you know, not only the topic of today’s interview, but you know, look into there’s a categorical index on bat gap calm, and there’s one category is for out of body experiences. Those are very interesting. And they pretty clearly demonstrate that one can have conscious experience, even at a distance when the body is incapacitated in some ways, such as, and that this is closely related to near death experiences, also. So that there are a lot of things and Jim Tucker’s reincarnation studies is, are very interesting. I won’t elaborate on them now. But I just did his interview last week. So spend a few hours looking at those things. And I think you’ll find it convincing.
JULIE: So with this, the medium ship data, they’re, they’re reporting accurate information under blinding conditions. So that has to be sigh. And when you look at the phenomenology data, it’s they claimed that they’re talking to the dead and that’s what the data support. So that provides scientific evidence that mediums are communicating with the survived consciousnesses of people who have died.
RICK: Yeah. QUESTION came from Dan Mitchell in Sparta. I never know where the cities are. That’s either in Greece or in Georgia, I think, probably Georgia. Would you explain how a triple blind study works? Now you do quintuple blind studies, but I guess he just wants to know a little bit more about this blinding process and what and for the non scientists what the word blinding means. Let’s make sure we’re clear on that.
JULIE: Okay, so blinding, is a is a system used in research where different people are prevented from knowing different types of information. So we call our protocol quintuple blind, because there’s five levels of blinding. So the medium is blinded to information about the sitter. The sitter is blinded to which reading was intended for them. And then there are three experimenters who are blinded to various pieces of information. I’d previously published a journal article where we called it triple blind, and it’s the same thing. Oh, I
RICK: see. Yeah, yeah. It’s that
JULIE: the in when that paper was published, there were I was working with research assistants, and they that we didn’t think of that as we don’t think of them as people. Now, I don’t want to say that, but it’s really the same thing. It’s the same level of blinding in both cases. Yeah, I know. Jim Tucker hates that, that I use the term quintuple blinding because he is a doctor and he like double is He’s willing to go like, either the people are all blinded or they’re not. And so he doesn’t like that we’re quintuple, but we just want to demonstrate that there are five people involved in the protocol, and they’re all blinded to different pieces of information.
RICK: So you’re being very careful. That’s essentially it. Okay, so it kind of sounded like from things I’ve heard you say that, you know, you’re not taking on new mediums. And a lot of the mediums you were working with, aren’t actively doing it anymore, at least with you.
JULIE: So now, just to just so we still have a team of 18.
RICK: Okay, so you still because I was wondering, what keeps you busy these days? So, so most of you still do, but you don’t need to take on new ones? Because 18 is enough. Yeah.
JULIE: 18 is enough to have a good end for any study. Yeah, a good number.
RICK: And so are you learning new things? I mean, you’ve been working with these 18 for some many number of years now. Is it the same thing over and over again? Are you kind of breaking new ground?
JULIE: That’s a good question. So what we did in 2017? Because we thought, well, they’re representative of the larger population and medium. So whatever we find with them, is they’ll it’s just sort of generalizable to mediums, you know, on in the hole. And we said, Well, let’s think about that. Is that true? So what we did in 2017, was we did a survey study, and we asked mediums all over the country, to fill out various questionnaires and that sort of thing. And we had, it was like close to 130 mediums. We did one study where we we looked at well, it’s very, there’s a lot of different pieces, but we looked at the we compared mediums and non mediums with their and psychology and their various scores on various tests. And some of the mediums were our Winbridge mediums. And some of them were self identified mediums from the public from the world. And so we did a number of studies, where we were we we did look at do these data, are they generalizable? Is our little population of Winbridge, certified research mediums, representative of the larger population, it looked like that is the case. But we did collect a lot more information from this wider population of mediums.
RICK: I heard you say, perhaps it was in your book, that there’s a higher than average, quite higher than average incidence of certain health problems in mediums than with a general population, such as migraines, and two or three other things you mentioned. You want to comment on that a little bit?
JULIE: Yeah. So in that in, what you read heard, was from the Winbridge, mediums, the limited, right, the just the ones on our team. And that’s one of the things that we did want to look at in the survey, because I have an autoimmune disease. And so in just talking with him, I learned that a lot of them on our team had autoimmune diseases as well. And I thought, well, is that common? And so in our survey, we did look at that we did ask a bigger population of mediums. And it did it will it it did ring true. So the mediums in the study, reported higher levels of incidence of autoimmune diseases than the non mediums in the study who were matched for gender, race and age. So it was the the majority, the average is white women in their 50s. That’s our, that’s our population. So if you will get white women in their 50s Predominantly, who identify as mediums and compare that to why women in their 50s, who identify as not mediums, the mediums report a much higher level of general disease burden, like we just had a big list of symptoms, and the different organ systems that people have. So the medium is reporting more just general symptoms, and more autoimmune diseases specifically.
RICK: I had a spiritual teacher for many years. And the first time I ever saw him on a course he gave a whole talk about mediums. And he discouraged us from getting involved in it because he said it might be interesting information. It might be valid information, but it’s bad for the medium. It breaks down the mind body coordination, but he was referring specifically to a spirit or entity or something, taking control of the mediums personality or nervous system and kind of putting them off in a corner and then speaking through them that way. And I don’t think that’s what your mediums are doing. Even though they they do seem to have. Well, I’ll stop there let you comment.
JULIE: Okay. Yeah, when mediumship research began in the 80s 1880s The mediums that were being studied were the way they would do readings would be in seances. And they would achieve full trance. And so and they would let speak that’s called a spirit control, take over the body and speak through their throat in their voice. And so when the reading was over, you couldn’t do any phenomenology research with them, because they weren’t there when the reading happened. They were unconscious, basically. So you couldn’t ask them about their, their experiences. So that’s one of the reasons why we were able to do that in modern times, because the most of the mediums do not achieve full trance or let a spirit control take over them. My personal theory is that because women have rights now, and we’re not going to let someone else take over our body, that is my personal opinion. But the data are that most mediums practicing in the US are achieving full trance, some do. Some do. Sometimes it’s it’s a continuum. So that was my when I was hearing about the mediums and our team having these autoimmune diseases, that’s what I was thinking, like, oh, cuz you’re bringing because they feel that the experience that the medium has is what we call multimodal, they see things, they smell things, they taste things, and they feel things in their body. So my theory was, oh, well, because you’re feeling so many people’s cause of death and ailments, your body is getting confused about what is self and what is other. And that’s why you’re getting autoimmune diseases. That doesn’t seem to be the reason we did. In our survey. Study, we looked at the idea of ACEs adverse childhood experiences, and the mediums did score really high, versus the non mediums in having experiences of child childhood abuse and trauma. And even in the mainstream literature, that connection is well established, that childhood trauma causes adult disease. So that my conclusion was that it’s not mediumship that causes disease. It’s childhood trauma that causes mediumship. And disease.
RICK: That’s very interesting. Do you think it’s because somehow the childhood trauma just cracks US Open in certain ways that we otherwise would not be opened?
JULIE: That’s, that’s one of the theories, there’s theories that interrupts I think, is what your teacher might have been saying interrupts the energetic pathways. It allows, it requires the development of psychic ability, because in in those kinds of situations, you don’t know where the danger is coming from. And you have to be able to acquire information that there’s no way you could know otherwise, there’s no sensory logical way you could know. So you develop psychic ability to be able to predict where and when danger is coming. And then once you can do that, now you you’re open to all these other kinds of psychic abilities.
RICK: Yeah, it almost seems like mediumship is kind of a curse and a blessing. It’s like almost a wounding in a way from having had these traumatic childhood experiences. You’re somehow damaged, but the damage somehow makes you gives you capabilities you wouldn’t otherwise have.
JULIE: Yeah, and I want to point out because people in in question chats like the one that you have have asked like, well, if if they’re does adult trauma, resulting meet No, there’s no data that adult trauma results in a medium or a psychic ability. So please don’t put yourself in danger in an attempt to acquire psychic ability.
RICK: Before we get too far from the thing we’re discussing a minute ago, I want to bring up Edgar Cayce. He who obviously was well firstly, he was a man, but he was also a trance medium. I don’t you can tell us better than I know. But so I understand it. When he came out of a reading Hill, he didn’t know what he said he was gone and it’s all this stuff was just coming through him. Is that Is that right?
JULIE: I don’t know. Specifically. I will. I won’t comment on on Edgar Casey specifically, but that is the general idea of what happens when mediums go into full trance. So me like the term trance medium, is it really accurate because some mediums even in their own practice, they’ll go into different levels of trance. So we we, we talk about there’s two kinds of mediumship mental, where a medium receives communication from a deceased person and conveys the messages to the living. And then there’s what’s called physical mediumship where the medium is at the center of physical phenomenon like voices at ports. So objects that just appear out of thin air, things like that. So that’s the two kinds, and then the level of trance and either one of those is all along the continuum. So some physical mediums might go into full trance and mental mediums might go into full trance, and some of each type have very shallow transit of consciousness.
RICK: Do you happen to know whether Edgar Cayce he was traumatized as a child or whether he
JULIE: had not? Yeah, I do not know that.
RICK: We probably know whether he was unhealthy as a result of his mediumship or anything? I don’t know, I don’t know, I’m sure that that information is available. I was just curious. Question from Irene. The readings I have seen in which the deceased relative very clearly comes through, seem to always happen when the living relative is harboring some deep guilt or grief, the deceased friend or relative comes through with the messages with messages of forgiveness and love and allows the living person to greatly lighten their load and move on the most profound and accurate readings I’ve seen have a real need or purpose to them, I find this very inspiring.
JULIE: So my expertise is in this bringing mediumship into the laboratory. And in our readings, we ask these very specific questions. What did the person look like? How did they die? Those sorts of things. But we do one of the questions we do ask is, Does the person have any messages for the sitter, the absent sitter, who will read this in a transcript? Because we do want to optimize the environment, the purpose of a mediumship reading is to connect. We talked about it as triangulated, right? It’s a it’s a, it’s a three part system where the medium connects the deceased person with the siddur. And so of course, what you know, why would you want to connect with the people in your life? It would be to say things like that. So if there an unresolved things in a relationship, whether the person is in their body or not, then yeah, there would be impetus to bring those things up. And to talk about those things just make sense.
RICK: Yeah. I’ve heard you mentioned physical things that could even be detected with a camera, if there was one there such as tables shaking or things breaking, or, I don’t know, that kind of stuff, things levitating or whatnot. Have you actually ever witnessed any of those things in your studies? Or is this just anecdotes that you’ve heard in this realm of mediumship.
JULIE: I mean, when we when that when Physical Mediumship is defined, those kinds of things are listed in the literature in the in the, in all of the books. My studies are with mental mediums, my husband, Mark, because he studies he has done research with physical mediumship. So he did some studies with table tipping, and where he used thermal imaging cameras to document any and all kinds of cool things. I won’t even it’s all technology. And if it’s not my thing, I’ll let him talk to you about that at some point. But my My primary research is with mental medium, so I don’t really know a whole lot about physical mediumship.
RICK: So in physical mediumship, is the medium somehow facilitating? Well, I shouldn’t ask him and he just said you don’t know much about it. Anyway, I’ll just ask is the is the medium somehow facilitating those physical events? Or the presence of the medium is making those physical events more likely to happen as a way of convincing people that something’s really going on? Is that is that the point of it?
JULIE: I don’t really know about the phenomenology of that physical mediums. I know. There’s a book called Surviving death that journalist Lesley Kane put together, she had written a book about UFOs, where she put evidence together from pilots and Weather experts. And she basically just presented the data and said, You decide what it is. And she wanted to do the same thing again with survival research. So like I wrote a chapter in your book, Jim Tucker wrote a chapter in her book, and she does cover physical mediumship in that book, again, it’s called Surviving death. So I would point people to that or on our website, they’re on the Winbridge Research Center website. winbridge.org. I know we have that article that Mark wrote the journal article that Mark wrote about his physical mediumship study that he did.
RICK: Okay, good. There’s a section in your book about animals coming through, you know, went through through with mediums. And everybody loves animals, you have a couple of dogs, we have a couple of dogs. You have some interesting stories you can tell about this.
JULIE: Um, we we took our quintuple blind protocol, and we replicated it with instead of deceased people whose deceased companion animals. And we saw similar data to what we see with people. And when I presented this, the pilot data, the initial, like what I’d collected at the time, data at a scientific conference, the line, you know, people get up from the conference and stand at the microphone to ask a question, the line was nearly out the door. Scientists were sobbing, it really brings out it’s a much different kind of grief. Because there are people in the world who don’t think oh, it’s people say, it’s just a dog. Are you kidding me? It’s a member of my family, and I love her the same. And her consciousness just because she can’t talk doesn’t mean her consciousness is any different than ours. I think it was Socrates said that. The soul is the soul. The soul is the same in all living creatures, only the body is different. So it just makes sense. Why would why would we be the only ones that are consciousness survived. So we did the study, the data looks good. We had to stop the study. Because the people it was, it’s so blinded, right? The people don’t get to talk to the medium. It’s just a, it’s just a, they just get emailed at the time. This was before online questionnaires were available. They just emailed a Word document with like, the scription. It the people were suffering too much in the city that we didn’t feel it was ethical to keep doing that to people who had lost the animals. But lots of mediums bring through. That’s how we talk about, I will try and stay on track with my sentence, we talked about, there are three kinds of information that mediums bring through. The first is information identifying of the discarnate. The second is things that have happened in the sitter’s life since the death. And the third are messages like if the medium just started out with he says he loves you that’s not meaningful, you have to identify the person first prove to me it’s you. And then prove to me you’re still around. So we talked about those three kinds of things is, it’s me, it’s me, I’m here, I’m here. I love you, I love you. So with the, it’s me, one of the things that was coming through in the, in the research with deceased people was the the discarding would say, Oh, I have the little white dog with me. And so we were seeing animals were coming through. And so that was the observation that we made. And so we replicated the protocol with deceased animals. And again, it works at the end, lots of mediums, report. Animals, and some of them specialize in it, of bringing through deceased companion animals. And it worked. But again, that just the ethics of because it’s a different kind of grief. We just weren’t able to continue that study.
RICK: We used to have we had a cat die one time many years ago. And for several days after she died, we kept being woken up at night by hearing her cry. And it wasn’t like she had been crying a lot before she died or anything. We just like woken up by a cat crying sound. And there wasn’t any, you know, our windows weren’t open or anything like that. It was just we really felt like, you know, she’s talking to us.
JULIE: Yeah. And lots of people have those kinds of experiences and and we would call that a spontaneous after death communication, right? It was your phenomenology, it was your experience that that was your cat. And so we have to take that seriously. That was your experience. And a lot of people report spontaneous after death communication experiences from their deceased people and their deceased animals. So what the Winbridge Research Center, our primary mission is to alleviate suffering around dying death and what comes next. So we want to be able to normalize those kinds of things so that when you tell someone they that story, they’re not like you’re a lunatic, right? We want it we want to put it in the world that no, these are real experiences. It’s valid consciousness survives, of course, it can come back and talk to you, or cry at you whatever the case may be. And we want to we want to provide, so the way that we accomplish our mission is by performing rigorous scientific research, and then creating free educational materials. So with our educational materials, we want to be able to show people these are real experiences, they have science behind them, and they’re normal and we get we need to stop discounting them and we need to stop disparaging them in Our society.
RICK: Yeah. So those educational materials on your website? They are Yeah. It’s interesting. You know, I mentioned I interviewed Jim Tucker last week who studies children who remember past lives. And I put up a, you know, a notice of that interview on my Facebook page. And a number of people chimed in and said, Oh, yeah, my kids, you know, they, when they were two or three years old, they were talking about past lives. And you know, the people never reported it, or any anybody did anything about it, but it made it sound like it was kind of a common phenomenon. And in fact, Jim and I were talking about how it may happen way more commonly than we realize, because, you know, perhaps even before kids are pre verbal, they, they’re remembering things clearly, but they can’t express it. And so I wonder if in the same vein, there is a lot of mediumship stuff going on. And you know, you’ve only seen the tip of the iceberg in terms of people who actually pursue it as a career or get in touch with you about it or anything like that.
JULIE: Yeah, definitely. Um, and one of the reasons why it’s important to be studying mediums is that people are getting readings from mediums and we need to understand that better. So we did the accuracy testing, we’re doing the phenomenology and, you know, we’re looking at disease burden, and childhood trauma and those kind of things psychology, like what we found in our research was mediums, again, compared to non mediums of the same gender, race and age profile, are less neurotic than, and they’re on a different test, their psychological well being is stronger. So they’re not the mediums that are not crazy. They’re not weird. They’re so psychological well being is actually stronger than non mediums in our city. So these are the kind of things that we need to understand, and who should be getting a reading and when, and what kinds of death are maybe better for it, or worse for it. And so we’re trying to we serve four populations at the center, the general population mediums, researchers and clinicians. So what to health care providers, mental health care professionals, and general health providers need to know about mediumship if they have a higher disease prevalence, then maybe your general practitioner should know that when you come in and say, I’m a medium, they know to look for these kinds of things. Because you’re you may have a higher tendency to have these things. And we also want to train mental health professionals. I work with a licensed social worker from Texas, her name’s Beth Kristofferson. And she was really interested in in that many years ago, several years ago, the World Health Organization called out that religion and spirituality were important for people’s health. And they started putting together questionnaires that doctors are supposed to ask patients about religion and spirituality. But they none of these questionnaires include questions about the afterlife were experiences that you’ve had with your person that you may have lost. So Beth put together a instrument and she and I wrote a paper and there’s a free fat, the paper is free, and the fact sheet is free. On our website, where it trains, it’s an instrument that clinicians can use because what she was hearing from her colleagues was, I don’t talk about the afterlife in my practice, because I don’t know how to ask, I don’t know what to say. And so she put together this instrument that clinicians, mental health professionals can use in their practice to feel confident in being able to talk about the afterlife, because people want to talk about it. They want to know it’s not weird, they want to know it’s common. And so this instrument includes direction for the if you want to point people to other resources, it it’s a it’s a conclusive instrument that would it trains clinicians on how to how to incorporate afterlife beliefs and experiences into their mental health practices. Hmm.
RICK: I know, Danny and Brinkley who had a bunch of near death experiences, he ended up dedicating himself maybe he’s still doing it to working in you know, homes where people are going to be dying pretty soon I forget what you call those homes, but assuaging people’s fear of death, and based upon his own experience, that in fact, you don’t really die. And, you know, providing a lot of relief to people thereby.
JULIE: Yeah, think about how much money families could save and the society could save if we stopped if we really, really believe weaved that consciousness is primary and even when the body dies consciousness can continue to live on. What What if we really believe that and we stopped trying to keep bodies alive, and we just let bodies go, bodies are going to die. That’s what bodies do. And we don’t know how much trauma that’s causing the consciousness to be trapped inside the body for this extended amount of time where we just are keeping it alive on machines. You know, and causing ongoing trauma to the family. Try, you know, watching that body suffer. Yeah, and if we, if we as a society could, that you could decide, and I could decide, when it’s my time to go, I’m going to go, I’m not going to, I’m not going to hold on, I’m not going to. I’m going to I’m going to go when it’s my time. And we would save a lot of money and a lot of heartache, and a lot of trauma to our selves and our family. If Doctor stopped thinking of death as a failure, bodies are going to die. It’s a part of life.
RICK: Yeah. I don’t know the percentages. But I’ve heard that, you know, a large percentage of the total healthcare expenditure in a person’s life, on average is, you know, a is incurred in the final weeks or months, you know, whether in intensive care, and it’s just this huge, expensive thing. And that has implications for being able to provide universal health care and make it affordable to the whole society.
JULIE: Yeah, yeah, no, these are really important pieces. And mainstream research isn’t addressing these things. You know, we know, we know through mainstream research, right, a doctor spends that closer and closer a person a patient is to dying, the less and less time the doctor will spend in their room in the hospital. So we know that. And we we have at the Winbridge Research Center, we have a Scientific Advisory Board of experts in the field, Jim Tucker is on our board of people to provide input on protocols. But we also have a clinical advisory board of mental health professionals and, and doctors who are working in intensive care, and those sorts of things. Watching people go through that process all the time. So we we need to get this information out, we we put together a I don’t like to use the word pamphlet, because it sounds like it’s an advertisement. But it’s a it’s a pamphlet about end of life experiences. And so what and what to expect. So that’s available for free on our website in the factsheet section of the education page. But so you can print that out pretty. It’s comforting. And so families of people who you know, are dying, the dying themselves can look at that. And so it’s not so scary. We know people die, a lot of people have died, we know what to expect. We know what’s coming. And if we if you were educated about if people were educated about that it would be less scary. So again, that’s what we’re trying to do at the Center is alleviate suffering. So we put together these free materials that people can use.
RICK: Yeah, most of the Near Death Experience store people that I’ve heard or talk to. They don’t have a death wish. But they all say, I’m kind of looking forward to it. I mean, I’m enjoying life, but I’m not at all concerned about dying. I’ve been there done that. And it’s it’s glorious.
JULIE: Yeah, I’m kind of fascinated by it. Like, like, what is it like to live and not not be trapped in this meat bag? Right? Like, can I go anywhere? Can I know anything? Right? I have a neighbor that lives to Verizon for me. And she and I, her she and her husband met in high school. And so they’ve known that they went to college together. And I was at college at the same time that they were at, like we all went to the same college, but we never knew each other. So that’s going to be my first question. When I die is like, how many times was I in the same room with her? How many times did I pass her in the Student Union. And I never knew I went to know all those times. And so I’m fascinated with this. This idea that outside not being trapped in the body, I wrote a I did a presentation at a meeting and then I wrote an article about it. And it’s called you’re not even in there now. And it’s this idea of based on my medical background, that this and this tissue turnover and those kinds of things and that were half bugs, and that like this isn’t me. And there’s a lot of cool research, mainstream research. They never talk about non local consciousness in these mainstream papers, but there’s a lot of research where they do. There’s like one called rubber hand illusion, and you put your hand on the table, and then they, they replace it when you’re not looking, now you’re looking you know what they’re doing with a rubber hand. And then they like stroke your hand at the time that someone else is stroking the rubber hand. And so you, your mind goes, Oh, okay, that’s our hands now, okay. And then if they hit it with a hammer, you will react with adrenaline, because you your body thinks that’s your hand. And it works with full body illusion experiments as well, it’s really easy to fool the mind into thinking that you are somewhere else. And so only when we have constant constant feedback from our senses. And, like proprioception, where we feel like we are in the world that it can be, it’s just continual evidence, like I’m in here, I’m in here, I’m in here. But if you interrupt, it’s so easily interrupted, you’re, you’re just barely in there like it would, it’s going to be easy to be done. If we really learn how to how to do that how to know, we’re not really in here. And so I’m interested in developing other ways that we can demonstrate that to the living to the Healthy Living like, Oh, you’re not even in there now. So it’s not scary that sometime soon, you’re going to be not in here, because you’re not even in there. Now.
RICK: You remind me of the line from Good Morning Vietnam, where Robin Williams had to get really early to start the radio show. And he’s kind of like dragging himself down the hallway. He said, I’m not even in my body. Yeah, and none of us are. Yeah. Well, we aren’t we aren’t. I mean, you know, we want to get too abstract, but it’s like what we really are. The universe is in us. It’s like we’re not this little pin point of life in a vast universe. The vast universe is contained within on boundedly vast self, which is what we are.
JULIE: You know, it’s like when we think of, oh, we should take care of nature. We are nature. We’re in nature. We’re part of nature. So yeah, we’re part of the universe. We’re not separate from it.
RICK: Yeah, a few minutes ago. You were, I was reminded of a story from Yogananda, his autobiography of where he had a pet deer in his ashram or something. And he overfed the deer on warm milk or something like that. And the the deer was dying because it had gorged itself, and, and you’ll get on the love the deer, and he was holding in his lap, and he was just sort of wishing and praying that the Earth would live, the deer would live. And then at a certain point that the voice of the deer or the spirit of the deer came to him very clearly and said, let me go, it’s my time to go. You know, you’re holding me back.
JULIE: Yeah. I did that I held on to the previous dog that we had, I did not want her to go I. And she just was she just was so lethargic. And it was like, she had really bad hip problems. She had trouble getting around. It was definitely her time. But I feel really bad about this to this day, I would not let her go. And at some point, we decided, and I was she was laying down outside. And I called the vet who does home house calls sometimes. And I said, Can you come over and put her down in our house. And while I was on the phone with him, she came over to me. She like was just sitting down outside all content. She got up came over to me. And like, yeah, what you’re doing is the right thing. Yeah, you know, encouraged me, I think to make this phone call to the vet. So And imagine if we could do that with our human bodies like, No, it’s my time. Let’s, let’s let’s get out of here. I’m done.
RICK: Some people do sign waivers and stuff, right saying and they’ll don’t don’t sustain me on life support or anything like that. I want to check out. Yeah. Yeah. I was just I was just reading about Richard Fineman, the other day, the physicist and he had some serious problem and his kidneys were shot. And at a certain point, you know, they said, Well, we can put you on dialysis and you’ll live a couple more months, maybe he said, Now man, I’ve I’ve lived a great life. I’ve accomplished what I want to accomplish. I’m out of here.
JULIE: Right? It’s different between like, the quantity of days versus the quality of life. Yeah,
RICK: I mean, it’s kind of we’re sort of you know, really dwelling on this one point but it needs to be dwelt on I think, because still the way the society functions What people may believe that You know, so many Christians think you’re going to heaven or Hindus think you’re going to be reincarnated or whatever, there’s, you know, doesn’t seem to work out that way. In practice, there’s so many people being kept alive, beyond the point of hope of returning and having any quality of life, although there are rare examples where that kind of thing happens. But if we really understood that, you know, when the physical body dies, that’s not the end of us. It’s kind of like hanging on to, you know, you have a 1987 Chevy or something that you’re still driving around, and it’s breaking down all the time. You’re spending all this money on repairs, and you know, you could be in a nice, you know, brand new one, maybe a Tesla.
JULIE: Right? Yeah, we don’t know. Yeah, maybe we all get a Tesla when we die. I heard Yeah. Right. That’d be awesome. I heard someone who had a near death experience described like someone said, Well, when you were out of your body and looking down, like what did you think of your body? And she goes, it was like a, like a jacket. Like, yep, that’s my jacket. But if it goes, if someone loses it, like, I’m not going to be upset about that, that was the attachment that she had to the jacket. Yeah. The Bhagavad
RICK: Gita use the Bhagavad Gita uses that very same metaphor. They say the body is like a suit of clothes. And just as you you know, discard worn out clothes and put on new ones. You do that with bodies? Yeah.
JULIE: Yeah, I’m fascinated with what it’s going to be like to not be stuck in here. And, again, what I lovingly refer to as the meat bag, no, I, you know, we’re, we’re in the body now. Like, let’s make the most of that. And then when that experience is over, let’s move on and do something else.
RICK: Yeah, when my mother died, she died of ovarian cancer. Well, it was long time ago, 30 years ago or more. And she she had tried to commit suicide three times herself, but then she, she wasn’t the pharmacist. So she just took a lot of my father’s female phenobarbital and somehow she was discovered and her stomach was pumped and she lived. Anyway, I got her on to meditation. And it really turned her around. And she lived quite a happy life for many years. But then when she was finally dying, I remember we were in the hospital room, and she’s saying to the doctors now don’t try to keep me alive unnecessarily. And then she finally checked out, and we’re sitting in the room with their body. And my wife said that she heard her say hi. I mean, it’s like they what they do, and this is really great. Just saying hi.
JULIE: A couple years ago, the NIH put put it out there request for proposals they wanted to study. Get the word wrong. It used to be called terminal lucidity. I think it’s para paradoxical lucidity. Because they didn’t want to have the word terminal to scare people. But they put out a call for proposals. We want to know more about paradoxical lucidity, which if people don’t know is when someone is in the throes of dementia, or even in coma. And then they sort of spontaneously become lucid or wake up and have a very intelligible conversation with you, and then go back, and then a little later, the pens, then they pass over, and then they die. And so I was like, okay, so I asked the mediums on our team, have you ever communicated in a reading with someone? And then you later found out from the sitter? Oh, yeah, that’s my mom. But she’s not dead. She has dementia, or she’s in coma? And they all said, Yes, every single one of them said, Yes. Interesting. And so I said, let’s look at that. And the NIH said, No, we’re not looking at that. They were not interested. But that’s really important, right? Because if someone’s in coma, they can’t make, they can’t tell you what they want. But maybe that’s something that a medium can do. And so the way they were describing it was like one foot in one foot out, and that they sort of are coming and going, and that they come back into the body. But then they’re also like investigating and experiencing what the other side is like, and they’re coming back and forth. And if so what if, in that situation, the medium could communicate with the person and tell you what their needs were right. If you didn’t have a DNR Do Not Resuscitate order in place. But you but you were like your mom, you did not want to be resuscitated, and that that paperwork wasn’t in place, maybe a medium could share that with your family. For you, and then again, that’s a lot less suffering that has to happen. So there’s all these socially applicable things that we need to investigate.
RICK: Yeah, this is an interesting thing. Perhaps we’ll even think of a few more of these before we’re finished. I’m fascinated by the whole practical implications of this thing. You know, we’ve mentioned several. And it’s just worth noting also that with terminal acidity, sometimes this happens when people’s brains are physically deteriorated, you know, with advanced Alzheimer’s or something, and yet somehow, they’re able to function lucidly for a little while. close to death.
JULIE: Yeah, it’s, it’s physiologically impossible, what happens. There’s one of the early cases, we we publish a journal at the center, it’s called threshold. And the articles are all free. And on our website, and on the threshold website, and one of our contributors is an author, and she wrote a paper about this idea of, of terminal acidity, paradoxical lucidity. And one of the early cases, which I think from the 1800s was a woman who she’d been nonverbal, since she was like, six, she was in a home for people that that, you know, the family can’t take care of. So they just give them to the home. And the girl just like, hadn’t talked or move, she couldn’t even feed herself, I don’t think. And then near the end of her life, she sat up and she sang like a whole him, you know, word for word. And then she laid back down and died. And so there are the, this is not a new phenomenon, these cases have been around. And it is something that we should look at as a potential place we can alleviate suffering.
RICK: Yeah. And then there are other examples of people who have brain injuries or something and all of a sudden, they become excellent jazz pianist, or something that having never really learned to play the piano. They’re all these these abilities, Dawn. So there are implications regarding you know, what? The soul or whatever we are ultimately, may know, or possess skills, knowledge and all that, then perhaps we only manifest a certain small portion of it, but there’s something can unlock it.
JULIE: Yeah, the, the idea we talked about, that the brain is the antenna. Yeah, so some, so lots of different verbs have been used like that, that the brain is the receiver is the mediator, it’s the transmitter, you know, it acts as a funnel, that that conscious is probably bigger. But now it has to get like vetted through this, you know, this bag of fat inside of your skull. It’s gonna have limitations. So, you know, when that when the brain isn’t really involved anymore, it brings up a good point, because people always ask, well, like, what, you know, what kind of EEG studies are you doing? And we did an EEG study with our mediums, and it did not go well. It’s not a good. It’s not an ideal method to study mediumship because mediumship you know, the phenomenology is there receiving it and saying it, right, there’s no, they’re not editing, what they say they’re just there. They’re a medium, they’re a translator. So they’re hearing it and saying it. And with EEG, because of the artifacts that muscle movement makes, you can’t talk while EEG data is being recorded, right? So it’s not, it’s not a good. It’s not a good method for setting mediumship in its natural environment, where they’re just talking spontaneously. So and then the other issue is, if it’s non local, and the medium is talking to the deceased person who doesn’t have a body, well, maybe the mediums consciousness is not in her body. And they’re talking like that, like, maybe if we looked in the brain, if we did MRI studies, which are really expensive, we wouldn’t even see anything, because they’re not even in there when it’s happening. And, again, we’re interested in what are the real world applications of this? So well, will that help anything to know that about the what the brain is doing?
RICK: And of course, law enforcement be another one, you know, medium could say, all right, describe the guy who murdered you, you know, what was he wearing? What it looks like? Did you have a beard? You know, things like that. Yeah.
JULIE: And there are lots of cases. That was one of the survey questions that we asked was how have you ever worked with law enforcement? And a number of mediums said yes. And they listed the the states and the cities and the departments that they worked with, and that does happen, the and the the law enforcement officers that have seen it happen, we’ll rely on it because they’ve seen it work, but they won’t be public about it. That’s very dangerous. I don’t I don’t think that I don’t I’m not mad at them. I can think of the right word. I’m not mad at them for not coming forward. That’s really dangerous. Their
RICK: job guys, you know, they don’t want out of the womb with the times. Yeah. All right. We should wrap it up because this is long for you. Oh, Maybe this will lead us to a final sort of wrap up point. Michael from Long Island, again, wants to know, is the research from Winbridge peer reviewed? And are there other studies that by other researchers that are trying to replicate your results?
JULIE: If I get lost remind me of that second piece. So yes, our data is all peer reviewed, it’s really a lot of it’s reviewed for peer reviewed four times. So we apply for a grant. So the, the, to be accepted, right, our application has to be vetted by our peers, by the people on the committee. Then we do the study. And then we write a final report, which gets vetted again, by our peers, then we submit an abstract for conference proceedings, and that’s vetted by our peers. And then when we write a journal article, and it gets published as a peer reviewed journal article, so yeah, our research is definitely peer reviewed a number of times over. And one of our on our on the Winbridge Research Center website, winbridge.org. There’s a research page and an education page and the top of the education page. The first category is peer reviewed journal articles. So all of our stuff is listed there. The ones that we have access to are available, you can download those some of our papers are behind the journals own paywall. So in those cases, we’ve written a factsheet, for free that summarizes the findings. And you can look at that. But yes, peer reviewed, yes.
RICK: And then he was asking about replication.
JULIE: Oh, so our protocol is very, it requires a lot of experimenters a lot of time, it’s very difficult. And so it doesn’t get replicated, like we would hope it did. There’s a group in Italy that’s currently working on a protocol similar to ours. But it does, it’s right again, because scientists need to eat and sleep indoors. There’s no money for things like this. So not a lot of people are doing it what would be the the impetus for someone to adopt this to try and replicate this stuff? It’s, it’s, it’s career suicide, there’s no money, you’re gonna get ridiculed. So yeah, that replication is the cornerstone of science. But in the real world, it’s really difficult. But other protocols are all out there. And people can read it and do it whenever they want. But it’s really hard. It requires at least three experimenters. And it’s very time consuming. You have to vet the sitter, you have to vet the medium. And so no, it’s it’s, it’s not easy to do. Okay, but we hope more people do it.
RICK: So if people got inspired by this interview, to actually get a reading with a medium themselves, what advice would you give them.
JULIE: So on our website is in the education page, there’s also a second called Fact Sheets, and we have a fact sheet, and it’s advice for sitters. And so people can look at that. But basically, you want to sort of engage in a, in a conversation with your deceased person, you don’t have to say it out loud, it can be in your head, that sort of thing that I’d like to communicate with you. And I’m thinking about getting a mediumship reading, please help me pick the one that you want to talk to. And then if you you know, you have a friend who got a good reading, and they tell you, they spontaneously tell you after you have that conversation, hey, I got a mediumship reading from this person, maybe that’s the person you go to, we have a list of the meat Winbridge mediums on our website. And so if you’re going to use that we suggest like you look through, they have the links to their websites. So maybe you go through the websites, and one will speak to you go, Okay, this one I like I like me and my deceased person like this one. And that you do that. And then I think leave your expectations at the door. Leave your assumptions, because that can really ruin a mediumship reading. So the medium doesn’t have any control over who comes through or what they say. They’re just a translator. So be open to the right stuff is going to come through, you don’t have any control over who’s going to talk or what they’re going to say and just be in the present and accept that for what it is. But again, this factsheet has some more do’s and don’ts.
RICK: Sure. Okay. So I’ll be linking to your website and to your books and all that and people can find that page on bat gap calm and just hop from those links to your site and your books and so on. So thanks so much Julie. I know this is a bit difficult for you because of the audio immune condition you mentioned and I really appreciate your spending this much time I hope it wasn’t too much of a strain or anything I’ve really He had a lot of fun talking to you and also preparing for this.
JULIE: I’ve had fun too. And thanks so much for having me. Yeah, I think this was I’m just about at my end of my interview. Well, I think we’re gonna wrap
RICK: it up before you fall off your chair. So thanks to those who’ve been listening or watching, I really appreciate you being here. And next week, we’ll be a physicist named Peter Russell, who’s written a book about sort of effortlessness and naturalness and in meditative practice, and go to bat gap calm and explore the menus and see what you find.
JULIE: Thank you. I should have mentioned, I encourage people to join our email list to be notified of when we have new papers and that sort of thing. So there, I should have said that I’m sorry. So we’ll leave
RICK: that. Leave that in right now. But what you’re saying right now, we’ll just continue this,
JULIE: okay. I encourage people to sign up for our email list, which you can do on our firstname.lastname@example.org to be notified. Whenever we have a new factsheet or new free materials we, we let people know about our email list. And we only send emails out about once a month.
RICK: Good. All right. Well, thanks for everything you’re doing and take care and maybe I’ll run into one of these days at some conference or something.
JULIE: Thanks so much for having me. It was a blast. Oh, you’re
RICK: welcome. Thank you, and how do you how to mark and hide the dogs? Thank you. Okay, bye bye. Bye.