A book entitled Practical Psychic Self-Defense may seem like a laughable choice for something to read, but my motivations were quite serious. I had been doing my own personal experiments into telekinesis (mind over matter) and I was getting unquestionable results as to the reality of the phenomenon. My unwitting “mentor” in these experiments was a friend from my childhood, whom I had witnessed perform telekinesis a long time ago. Nowadays, this person steers clear of the practice and whatever other occult practices that he dabbled in, because, in his words, “There was a price to pay.” He told me his personal story of underdoing a demonic intervention and how the garden outside the house burst into flames! I have no doubt of my friend’s honesty, but I do sometimes wonder if he himself was being taken for a ride by some snail-oil salesmen. If the sofa in the room had caught fire, I would have been more convinced, but the garden outside is somehow a little too convenient for trickery involving a can of petrol and some matches. I simply do not know. In any case, since I am (in a small way at least) a dabbler in things unknown, I thought it best to tread cautiously and read what an expert has to say on the hidden realm beyond human sight.
The author, Robert Bruce, is one of the foremost authorities on the topic of astral projection, the means of obtaining an out of body experience (OBE). He is the author of the popular book Astral Dynamics (1999). However, the present volume is the only one I have read.
Within a few pages of opening the book, I was reading with my eyes open in amazement and my brow creased in confusion. I was reading about astral snakes, astral spiders, black smoky columns, demons, poltergeists. Bruce paints a picture of a hidden world that is teeming with various kinds of parasitic consciousnesses. He talks about how most of them are very simple and predictable in how they operate; how they attach to the human energy body, and marks on the body are often signs of attachment points; how they affect the mind of the host; how they can be fought using sacred symbols, garlic, and running water. He gets into even greater depth, talking about how the chief means of demonic possession is through what he calls “core images” – traumatic unresolved memories that can be used as entryways for these entities. All this data has been compiled from his own experiences, many of which he details in the book. Particularly memorable is his own experience of possession, where he invited a demon that was inside a child to enter him instead, because he thought it would be easier to deal with there than in the child; later Bruce ended up parking his car at the top of a multi-storey car-park, taking his baby son out of the car, then walking to the edge of the roof. He got control of himself before doing the unthinkable.
Another interesting story is how he discovered that these entities cannot cross running water (unless they are hitchhiking with a person). He talks about how he felt sick at a party, felt it was something to do with the presence of a particular woman who had something nasty attached to her. He excused himself, and as soon as he crossed over the garden gate the nausea left him. He decided to go back in, and no sooner had he crossed the gate again, the nausea returned. It was as if there was some invisible barrier that something couldn’t cross to get to him. That barrier was the underground water-main.
There’s a whole spiritual science in this book, but here’s the rub. For most of us, we’ve just got to take Bruce’s word for it – or not. I simply do not know what to do with the information in this book. Little or none of it is verifiable from my own experience. I don’t find it laughable as a typical sceptic might, but I do find much to be sceptical of. For instance, if these are entities are, for the most part, simple and predictable in terms of how they behave, how come they are so adept at manipulating the complexities of the human mind and emotions?
I had a scary but amusing experience while in the middle of reading this book. I woke up in the middle of the night and saw a vertical black column attached to my chest. I leapt out of bed and switched on the light. Nothing was there. I wondered, was it really gone, or just veiled from view by by now wide-awake mind? I honestly don’t think it was anything but a hallucination. Well, it’s not the first night-time hallucination I’ve had, nor will it be the last. A half-sleeping brain can project anything into your bedroom.
Bruce also talks about how there can be psychic protection in being part of a church. The hyprocrisy of this really annoyed me. On the one hand, he advises people to use various magical procedures in order to combat negative entitles, while also advising people to join the Christian Church, which forbids the use of magic.
Bottom line: I don’t know what to make of this. The jury is on hold, but swaying somewhat towards the charge of “guilty of spewing nonsense.” All I got from this book was a case of the heebie-jeebies stronger than any horror movie I’ve ever watched. I’ll read it again and change my mind if I can ever verify any of it from personal experience. Until then, I can only look upon this volume as a waste of my time and money.
If you feel like trying out one of the procedures in the book, select a large mole (or grisly skin tumour) on your body, draw (with a pen or felt-tip) an equal-limbed cross across the mole, then a circle around the cross, like a target (the cross and circle should touch). If, in several days, the mole falls off, then Practical Psychic Self-Defense might just be worth a read after all.