John Lett (Readings)
I have been getting a lot of conversation starters lately related to hauntings and paranormal events. The following is a highly abridged version of some things that have happened around me in these four places (in my experience the four most supernaturally active places out of the 27 countries I’ve visited or lived in in the last few years). I used to have a lot more profound extrasensory events happen around me, but largely my education has suppressed them. In the years of my undergrad education (2003-2007), the orthodox world of controlling people at universities through linear thought patterns and then the whimsical world of nature and other worlds would often be at loggerheads at the beginning of a semester. This sounds crazy but I can distinctly remember hearing children laughing and fighting in the garage one day in September 2005, and I just had to dismiss it as a rebellion coming from the spiritual side of reality (or the brain).
I must preface this with saying that I have never seen a spirit. Also, I know of many stories of people who have but these stories belong to those persons, not me, although in the Korean segment, some of the students wanted me to publicize what happened to them.
I grew up here and I can tell you that most people would be pleasantly surprised how open-minded and perceptive people are in this region. There is a fair bit of superstition there as most people have a semi-religious background and there is an aversion to identifying oneself as an atheist.
I say that because the atmosphere is very unstable with the jetstream dividing through there and very sudden weather changes, people are very sensitive to atmospheric changes, be they weather or institutional.
There was a place in Topeka called the Topeka State Hospital, which was one of those places across the US, Canada, and Scandinavia of another era that families with someone a little bit unstable would drop that person off there and leave them to be experimented on by the state. I had heard of this hospital a few times after its closure but did not really know the background. One night while driving with a friend around the city, she wanted to go to this State Hospital. We drove near it and then suddenly I had to stop the car because I was crying and feeling all the suffering (I cry maybe once a year during a movie). She began crying too and did not want to go, and explained the history of the place, which I knew nothing of. Ice baths, ice pick lobotomies, deafening music blaring at people… all to break people out of their psychosis. Finally, about 30 minutes later, I convinced her to go, and as soon as we pulled up, my car radio went dead (you can see the creepy image of the building in 2008 before it was demolished and its story here).
…In subsequent visits, I heard people walking on leaves where no one could have possibly been walking, lights flashing on and off (where I later found out there were 1,100 unmarked patient graves at the time – I could sense a couple telling me the story). Some friends and I discovered an underground tunnel connecting the buildings. It also later came out that Joan Crawford and Robert Stack (Unsolved Mysteries) had filmed a movie called The Caretakers about an outpatient program in the 1950s there as all the facilities were in place. I even had the sense that I was followed home by spirits, so you really have to indicate when you dabble in these worlds that you are not wanting to become emotionally involved.
A year or so later, there was a ceremony that resulted in putting up a few monuments naming those buried there, and the hauntings stopped. In 2010 the building was destroyed for a political pork school district sports complex project.
In 2005, I was on tour in Germany and wanted to visit the city where Martin Luther began the Protestant Reformation. The church where it all began now houses a youth hostel. Eastern Germany has a haunted, dangerous feeling as it is. I walked through two miles of city streets from the Bahnhof and encountered no one, though there were hundreds of shops. It was about 39F/3C on a June evening. I went to an Italian restaurant where I was the only patron all night.
The church portion of the building was locked up for the night, from the outside and by padlock, but myself and a few other guests heard someone banging on the organ all night. The Hausfrau running the place thought our claims were a load of crap.
(For a “direction of Germany” post recently done and some references to past life memories of there, check out Tarot of the Day #7: Germany’s Pre-Eminence).
When I was doing a study abroad program in Denmark a few years ago, my host brother always came home very late. We had a competition where we would try to come up the stairs and not be detected by anyone. While living there, I kept having visions of a militarized Copenhagen where people had to live in fear; this has not yet happened although there is a strong anarchist movement there now and tighter immigration with racial and political divisions.
One night I heard someone creep up the stairs and take their time to make an effort to not wake anyone. The next morning, I said to my host mother “Oh, XXXX came home at 3 this morning.” She said, “No, XXXX not come home last night.” Sometimes in this house I would hear her laughter or my name said, or her name said – there was some kind of time warp or overlap of time going on in there. When you have a profound emotion that is good or bad, the atmosphere sometimes records it and plays it again when similar levels of electricity, heat or cold, or mood are matched again. It is possible for a haunting to happen when the actual spirit of the person is nowhere to be found in the vicinity.
NEAR SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA
In my two years in South Korea, I experimented with a lot of education techniques. One was inspired by a haunting that happened as soon as I moved into my studio apartment in August 2007. The first three months I lived there, I had no electronic media of any kind in this apartment: no radio, television, computer/internet, cell phone, music playing device, or anything. I would read classics every night, and so it was an atmosphere of extreme focus. One night at around 1 a.m. I heard a scratchy voice from what sounded like an older female. “Meetda meetda meetda meetda,” she said mostly. I told some of my young students and they were terrified because they said it meant “Believe it!” four times.
So I began, for the older students, lighting candles sometimes in the class and then asking the students to tell a story of a haunting they knew. I could not believe what they told! Let me tell you that if there is less abrasive light, people are far more likely to volunteer information and if they are introverted, they feel less grilled. Nearly half of the children had a story of something that happened to them. A year later, I did it with adult students and they told of how 1) one speaks to her father-in-law every year in the mirror around the anniversary of his death, 2) driving in the hills of southern Korea and passing by a hotel site but no one noticing their car lights in spite of there being no way to avoid it, 3) missing time, 4) child ghost apparitions, and so on.
These are the four regions I recommend if you want to have a supernatural experience, along with Japan (where I have been but not seen anything, but it is known among Koreans for being haunted). I advise, if you have the time, explore these dimensions of reality. If you are at the top of your career or have a job that requires your full attention to maintain market competitiveness, don’t go there yet!
John Lett (About) (Book a Reading)
ADDITIONAL DETAILS (Oct 13, 2011)
As some of you may have noticed, some people who are familiar with the site and vicinity of the State Hospital grounds in Topeka, Kansas have read the post and have given me permission to tell more of the background.
A few blocks from the State Hospital grounds stands a nursing home (we cannot discuss the name of the property here). A friend of mine who is now an established photographer (contact me if you want her details) worked there for many years and experienced a multitude of haunting experiences. One night, paper cups sailed across the kitchen. Many of the senior residents complained of children coming into their rooms at night and playing with their television sets and running down the halls. My friend once followed the sound of pitter-patter running down the hall to the stairwell, but found no one. Finally, in late 2009, a nightwatchman for the facility left his job with no explanation. Upon some inquiry, he said that he came into a room and saw two toddler spirits huddled down on the floor playing, and he had had enough.
What was discovered by my friend through co-workers and records was that the site used to have some kind of care facility for children, many of which were children of patients from the State Hospital. In the 1930s, there was a fire and many of the children perished. I have had trouble finding records of this as I am not on-site in Topeka and I do not know the name of this prior organization.
In a similar vein, this friend also recommends that one does not play with ouija boards, as she used one to identify the whereabouts and identity of the infamous “albino woman” spirit of North Topeka, and was successful, as there were directives to a particular street that my friend and none of her party had heard of, as well as the presence of orbs in photos taken.