Orlando and the Flipside

Wow. What's up with Orlando?

Christina Grimmie is shot by a crazed fan.

49 people shot by a crazed gunman.

An alligator stealing babies from Disneyworld?

It's hard to wrap our minds around.

Allow me to quote a spirit guide in "Flipside:"

"You can learn more spiritually (courage, compassion, loyalty, forgiveness) in one day of tragedy on earth than you can in 5000 years on some other boring planet."

I personally feel awful, and distraught over the events in Orlando.  I know that this individual should never have been allowed to buy an AR 15 - and it's proven that one gunshop owner refused his service and notified the FBI.

Why the FBI, after interviewing this fellow twice, chose not to do anything - or that another store sold him the guns and ammo - is beyond me.

The facts are loopy in many fashions - hanging out a gay bar, hitting on patrons, drinking, etc - not practicing any religion.  The fact that he claimed allegiance to "ISIS" is fatuous, since he wasn't a practicing Muslim, nor was he targeting gays for any reason other than he thought it was an easy target.

So I'm not interested in the debate about religion - since it's nonsensical in this case.  He wasn't Isis or Al Qaeda, or Bob Qaeda... he was just a mixed up wife beater from New York who was able to buy an AR 15 and act on his rage.

That being said - how to file this into the "Flipside?"  Well, there is quite a bit of research on this... once we get back there, or "off stage" we get a chance to see these actions for what they are.  Actions on stage, during a play so that we can learn from the actions involved.  The actions move out like a wave across the planet, influencing people to not want to kill others, or influencing them to copy his behavior.  It's part of what we sign up for when we come to the planet in the first place.

Ah, but there's the rub.  We have free will, and we can refuse to play the role of a villain in our lifetime.  We can say "Uh, actually, I've done that sort of thing before, and no, I'm not interested in playing that role.  Even if it takes 5000 years for these people to learn these lessons in some other fashion, I'm just not interested in taking on all the negativity and tragic emotions that will be associated with these acts.

We can take some solace in the research that shows that no one is dead - their physical bodies are not here, and that's stressful, painful and causes anguish. But they're okay.  They stepped off this stage and have gone back stage, and are doing their best from the perspective to help those here deal with tragedy.

But they are all okay.

Just not here.

That's not to mitigate or take away from the tragedy.  It is tragic. My heart goes out to every one of them, the parents of all involved, and the families of everyone.  It's an incredibly courageous thing to sign up for a lifetime where we're going to experience this kind of tragic loss, or giving up our lives for some noble reason - so that others can experience courage, saving lives, giving their lives to save others.

These are all part of the reports that we get from people who experience these events - people no longer on the planet who claim from the flipside perspective, they completely understand why and how they signed up for a life where they "wouldn't be here for very long."

Phillip Schultz,the father of wrestler Dave Schultz, who was killed by Dupont (as shown in the film Foxcatcher) spoke at his son's funeral.  During the euology he recounted the day when Dave was 5 years old and asked if he could share a secret. He took his father by the hand and walked out into the woods.

He said "I spoke to my council and we agreed that I would come here to teach a lesson in love.  But I won't be here for very long."

It's hard to imagine how Dave knew what his life trajectory would be.  It's hard to imagine how he could have agreed to that event, and even harder to imagine that he was able to remember it well enough to pass it along to his father to "soften the blow."

I have no idea if he softened the blow.  I suspect as we hear the stories of those who've been killed this past week, we're going to hear stories where they "came to visit their loved ones" after the event, or where someone in their family remembers some "odd conversation" that the victim had some time ago - either about "not being around very long" or "not going to be living to an old age."

It's as if we all know what we've agreed to and while we're on stage here, we do our best to forget it so we can have the most impact.  But too late - I'm here to turn the lights on the theater and say "Hey, wait a second. We agreed to do this play. But we don't have to learn these lessons the hard way - we have other ways to learn these same lessons, through sacrifice and helping others."

But I suspect everyone on stage might just say "Oh, stop it already, turn off the lights and get back to playing your part already."  That could be.

Still, my heart goes out to all those involved, all those who are suffering, all those who are trying to wrap their minds and hearts around such "senseless acts." 

They are never senseless, and they always make spiritual sense to those people who are involved... and they do come out of the experience realizing that they're not "dead" but are continuing to live on - and they will do their best to contact their loved ones to let them know they're still with them (kind of hard to do so at first, as the energy of the communication is all haywire) but eventually, people will see that these tragedies are part of a grander design.

One long way of saying hug your loved ones, do something for someone else, donate money if you can, or just stop and lend a hand.  Out of every tragedy comes some rose of enlightenment, and its up to us to look for them.  My two cents.  


Speaking at the IANDS Conference in Orlando July 27-29

If you’re in Orlando at the end of July, swing on by… speaking at the International Association of Near Death Studies ( in Orlando (also live streaming)

THURSDAY | JULY 28 @ 4-5:30 

Author, Filmmaker “Flipside: A Tourist’s Guide on How to Navigate the Afterlife” and “It’s a Wonderful Afterlife.” Talks about his research into the flipside via deep hypnosis as detailed in his best selling amazon books. He began to focus on NDE’s, OBE’s and others altered states of consciousness, interviewing scientists and near death experiencers who were able to use hypnosis as a tool to examine their NDE in more detail. He’s learned that based on his experience with the architecture of the afterlife, he’s been able to interview people who are fully conscious, yet are able to access or remember their near death experience, a hypnosis session, or even dreams. His new book “Hacking the Afterlife” details attempts to reach out to those no longer on the planet in search of “new information.” A blueprint of what is happening on the flipside is needed – a tourist map if you will. The map he’s constructed allows us to examine what scientists say about consciousness, along with what thousands have said about their journey in the flipside.   Visit his website

For tix and info, please visit HTTP://CONFERENCE.IANDS.ORG/


| SATURDAY | JULY 30 - 3:15-4:15| LIVE STREAM

He’ll talk about the “flipside of the flipside” – how there are some fun stories about interacting with the other side… how realizing that we don’t die (in spirit anyway) can help us navigate our lives.

Hurry Up! Discount ends July 5 - Live streaming registration starts Jun 14
Students 60 % discount on registration. Free Public presentation Thu Jul 28 7:30 pm.
Free Spanish Workshop NDE101 Fri Jul 29 at 4:45 pm. HTTP://CONFERENCE.IANDS.ORG/

Visit his website at


A Message of Love from The Greatest - Muhammed Ali

The end of an era.

Muhammad Ali, Muhammad Ali boxing, Muhammad Ali boxer, Muhammad Ali dead, Muhammad Ali death, Muhammad Ali passes away, Muhammad Ali death 74, Muhammad Ali boxing video, sports
In this April 28, 1967 file photo, Muhammad Ali is escorted from the Armed Forces Examining and Entrance Station in Houston by Lt. Col. J. Edwin McKee, commandant of the station, after Ali refused Army induction. (Source: AP)

When I heard that The Greatest had passed away, I felt that same odd feeling I felt in 1968, when as a child of 13, I heard the news that Martin Luther King had died. 

I wept, not knowing why, not really knowing how his life had affected me, or why.  I grew up in another part of the world away from him - but I knew and heard and felt the honesty of his words.

I felt the same way about hearing Muhammed Ali speak.  There was a poignancy and honesty in his words that cut to the core.

I've become a fan of his daughter Maryum having seen her on the reality show "60 days in prison" or whatever that show is called.  It's a shame that it didn't live up to its billing.  Thomas Mott Osbourn was an attorney who voluntarily put himself into jail so he could show the corruption going on at the highest levels. His book changed how prisons operate.  But as evidence from that show, they haven't changed much since 100 years ago.

I'm sorry that the prison officials were more interested in "how do drugs get into prison" than they were in "how can we learn how to treat human beings like human beings so that they can return to their life as individuals?"

Maryum obviously attempted to do that - but the show fell short of allowing any discussion of that.  It was about "finding the contraband" and creating an environment of fear.  Having worked in the film biz a long time, I know how reality shows are scripted, how they're shot, and how they try to manipulate the message.  It's a shame, because at the end it becomes what Muhammed Ali observed about boxers:

In 1970, Ali shared what he felt about two black men boxing. “Half the crowd is white. We’re just like two slaves in that ring. The masters get two of us big old black slaves and let us fight it out while they bet: ‘My slave can whup your slave.’ That’s what I see when I see two black people fighting.”

It's what we do here on the planet.  We watch ourselves attack each other on television every night. We watch people in poverty shooting other people in poverty, we watch scripted shows about billionaires cheating, lying, stealing from other billionaires, we have politicians running for office who put people down on a daily basis - especially one for how a person looks, their heritage, their religion - it doesn't matter.  It's always PUT THE OTHER PERSON DOWN.

But the truth is odd.

Between lives we are all equal.

We are exactly the same.

We don't see sinners as evil, or celebrities as famous.  

We see them as other souls.  Other individuals who are glowing with light, who may have caused suffering, who may be suffering themselves.  But we are all equal.

We aren't black or white, as if that mattered, we aren't male or female, as if that mattered, we aren't tall or short or rich or poor - as if that mattered. We are all equal.  Always equal.

Sure, there are people who are wiser, smarter, have been around the block more than us - they're our teachers.  But they regard us as bright, exciting, thrilling individuals - no less important, no less part of the vast inexpressable network of souls that are in the universe.  

And when people return to the flipside, whether through a near death experience,or under hypnosis - they all say relatively the same thing - they talk about that experience of feeling "unconditional love."  That's love that has no conditions. 

Hard to find it here on the planet, we might get it from a parent, or from a loved one, or give it to our children.  But to everyone else - extremely difficult to give out unconditional love because we're so busy judging them by how they look, their heritage, their race, their gender, their sexuality, their body parts, their lack of body parts, their afflictions, their handicaps, their legs, their feet, their toes - when all of it is a projection.

All of it is a projection - like light flickering in a movie theater.  Lights on a screen. Because we are what we project.  And on the flipside, when people show up who are no longer who they once were, they project the essence of who they were - and we see them in those brief moments not as wounded individuals, but as the whole person they once were.  We see them as they project themselves to us. We see them as THEY WANT TO BE SEEN.

Not as we used to see them - as some object of pity, or scorn, or love, or lust, or whatever nonsense we project onto them - they're doing the projecting now, and they can appear to us in whatever form they want to.  It's usually at the point they felt the best about themselves, and yet they want the person they're visiting to be able to recognize them, and not jump out of their skin when they appear.

Muhammad Ali and Maryum Ali
Maryum "May May" Ali, eldest daughter of Muhammad Ali, embraces her father. (Maryum Ali)

I've seen it.  I know many who've seen it as well.  I've filmed people seeing it. Seeing their loved ones once again, holding their hand, hearing their voice, feeling that unconditional love.

Meanwhile, the veil continues to thin. I've had this experience (my father visiting me with info about his pals on the flipside, my aunt had her husband appear at her bed to say goodbye, our kids have been visited by my dad and our pal Luana, etc). 

Maryum told the LA Times: On Sunday, Maryum Ali shared memories of her father with The Times, often still referring to him in the present tense, because “his energy is present,” she said. “It will always be around.”

maryum ali

"My father has many sides, like most people do. My father is a gregarious person. He’s upbeat. He has a positive, optimistic outlook on life. He’s a generous person, and loving. He simply loves people. So when people came to visit him in his hotel suite or came up to him on the street, he would look them dead in the eye and [say], “What’s your name, how ya doing.” He loved the energy of people.

Everyone who talked to him or dealt with him in some way, shape, form or fashion remembers the human qualities of him.  They called him the peoples’ champ. That what makes him so beloved. My father really was a ball of love. He really exuded that love to even a stranger. He didn’t treat that stranger as inferior. I am just so happy that I was able to experience that quality as a girl looking up and seeing him interact with people.

What did he teach you? 

The beauty of him is that he made time and made it a priority to be a good father. So the time he had with us, he was really trying to build up our character. I’m the woman that I am today because of him. I really listened to his lessons: How to be a respectful woman, how not to let men chip away at your esteem, how not to get involved in the dark side of society, in bad habits; stay healthy, watch who your friends are.

And what’s most important for me is that I love my religion of Islam. I stand up for being a Muslim, with all the craziness going on, all the negativity in this country about who Muslims are. I am proud to be a Muslim and unapologetic because of my father. He was going to give up his boxing profession for his faith. That was a beautiful example to have guide me.

How do you think he would like to be remembered?

I really think he just wanted to be seen as a human being who loved humanity, who wanted to fight for humanity, for all people. When you look at religious wars, when you look at racial tensions, all of that is divisiveness. And it comes in many shapes and forms: the pretty, the ugly, the black, the white. My father, through the essence of what he was, thought there should be no divisions, that this is wrong, that this is not what God wants. God made all of us beautiful in his image. Outside of the ring, that’s what he was about. And that’s how he wants to be remembered. A man who used his celebrity, who used his God-given talent to propagate the idea that we should not be divided as the human race in any way, shape or form. To me that’s the essence of him."

This just in from Maryum - a flipside tweet - 

maryum ali @maryum7 
"I know him as THE GREATEST father. I love you so much, Dad. His spirit visited me last night. Thank you world for your love & support!!!"

Thanks for sharing him with us.


Prince Speaks from the Flipside

Headline for this is "Prince Says "Live Your Truth" from the Flipside." I know Dr. Medhus (Elisa) and recommend this clip to everyone who is a fan of the Flipside research or Prince. I don't know the medium Kim, but I have worked with Dr. Medhus, was able to verify "new information" from a previous interview. (Elisa appears in "It's a Wonderful Afterlife" volume two.) Hard to announce that "everything Prince says here bears out in the research" but that is the case in terms of his descriptions of the flipside. 

Suspend your disbelief for 30 minutes to hear Prince talk about what it's like to go "home" (or as he call is "the homeland.") I've filmed 30 people under deep hypnosis, nearly every one talks about "returning home" with regard to their memories of life prior to coming here, or upon our return.

Some highlights: 1. "Be true 2 who U R." The central message, according to this interview, of his journey in this lifetime. 2. He had a pre-arranged "exit point" which he felt he could take, as he felt he'd "accomplished" mostly what he'd set out to do. That it was not a deliberate event, but one that he wasn't surprised by, and was "calm and accepting" about. 3. He says "If you say in your comfort zone you will never know who you are." That the paramount reason to be on the planet is to "be true to yourself." 4. "Don't pray it... be it." (In answer to why he told people "not to pray for him" - his point is to merge prayer and the idea of projecting what should be) 5. "If you believe (in a cure) and let go, miracles (of healing) can happen." (in answer to how he cured his own epilepsy, with the help of a guardian "motherly" spirit.) 6. "Purple Rain" referred to demonstrating, showing something bigger, more powerful than us, and he wanted to "shine light on things that are bigger than us" with the phrase. 7. The use of his "Prince" symbol was his way of defining "who I am, staying true to myself."

I applaud Elisa for posting this - and the work she does with her son Erik at ChannelingErik - this clip won't convince everyone that life continues on, or that Prince was the subject of this interview - but for those who are working in this area of research, everything he says here about his journey into the flipside is referred to at some point in "Flipside" and "It's a Wonderful Afterlife." Thanks Elisa and Kim Babcock!

"If I could do one thing to help the planet - give them vision to see what it looks like when they cause hurt - we'd all be kind."

How To Navigate The Afterlife w/ Richard Martini...Plus Haunted Bonus Vi...

Oh man! this is hysterical. At around 34: the skeleton "sits forward" as I'm talking - at around :38 it "turns its head" and around :40 it falls on its face!!!! I've seen the footage of this skeleton moving on another video on their website - the head turned on its own 100 degrees or so - not to look in the camera, but just away from where it was before while he left it on. Either Anthony has some vibration in his home he's not aware of (over the subway in Manhattan?) or... I don't know. Trippy. But funny too!!!!  How odd that I would be talking about the Flipside and this is the reaction?


Flipside talk via Paranormal Review

Fun interview on blogtalkradio this evening with the Paranormal Review crew. Lucy was in Chicago, and Anthony in NYC - with me in Santa Monica. All Flipside all the time.


Prince and the Flipside

When someone we love passes away, where do we go for solace?  Church usually.  Perhaps we sit in a pew and we focus our love and energy and prayers to the person who has left us.

From the Jazz fest. Photo E. Gundersen
Sometimes they answer.  (Reminds me of the old saying "If you speak to someone invisible while in Church, you're religious, but if they reply you're insane.")  It depends on how your circuits are wired, apparently.  As we know, some people can speak directly and often with people on the flipside, and all sorts of individuals show up to make their voices heard.  Some of them do it for others, some of them do it privately, some do it publicly. 

And some of us have heavy filters on our equipment - we can't hear anything from the flipside or our loved ones. Not a peep.  I hear it often; "I've been praying forever for a sign and nothing comes through."  Well, we're all different.  Each one of us has different brains, different energetic patterns, different tonality - different voices.  How many of us can spot our mother's voice in a crowd of voices?  That's tuning.  

Sound is a vibration, and depending on the person doing that tonal vibration, we may pick up on it. Or not.

Peter Max's tribute to Prince on twitter. copyright Peter Max

When my father came to visit me after he passed away, I thought "am I making this up?"  But I had enough sense to get up and find a pen and piece of paper. And his message from the flipside: "It's indescribably beautiful here."

The point being that words would not be able to describe it.

However, we are stuck with words, at least for the time being, as the best way that we can communicate with each other.  We do it through feelings and song, and other methods, but at the moment, words probably impart the most information.

I was surprised to hear that Prince suffered from seizures and epilepsy as a youth. But I'm also aware that many artists suffer, or benefit from neurological disorders as they're known in medical literature - but in actuality are the primary reason they're so good at so many things. It has something to do with their spiritual self - the part of ourselves that is always left behind in the flipside - communicating with their temporal self - the part of their energy that inhabits a human being.

And depending how strong that connection is - that person can tap into, learn from, gain insight knowledge and other things from the flipside. 

It's what I'm writing about for my new book "Hacking the Afterlife" - or whatever I eventually call it. 

The more I learn about Prince the more I think he was having conversations with his higher self.  I don't mean from the Jehovah Witness version of religion - although I'm familiar with it, I find all religions are actually talking about the flipside and their relation to it - translating experiences that their faithful have had over the eons and putting it into dogma.  But if we start with the basic ideas of religion - that we have a higher power, or higher self, or someone who keeps an eye on us - which is reportedly consistenly in all the flipside research - then we have a common area of communication.

I've been cataloging what people say under deep hypnosis for the past ten years, in my film "Flipside" and the books "Flipside" and "It's a Wonderful Afterlife."  In them there are transcripts of what people say under deep hypnosis (flipside) and what scientists say about consciousness (it's a wonderful afterlife) and reports from people who've had near death experiences.  There's also a number of conversations with people who are no longer on the planet.

I mention this preamble, because someone on facebook (thanks eric H) mentioned that Prince had talked about "going home" in one of his songs, and it seemed to be about the flipside.

So here's the song; it's the last track on 'ART OFFICIAL AGE' released in 2014 called "Affirmation III."

All rights reserved to NPG records, under license from Warner Music, quoting this lyric is merely for educational purposes only.  (excerpting the lyric to note the meaning behind it). 

I'm going to include the lyric, and then my comments on what the lyrics say, and how closely they resemble reports from the flipside:

"Affirmation III" lyrics by Prince.

"How are you feeling today, mister Nelson?
I trust you're having a quick and enjoyable adjustment period."
(RM: this is the time while you're adjusting to being no longer in a body)
As you can see, we’re communicating now telepathically.

(RM: we speak by thoughts there, answers appear before ww can form the question)
Which makes things move so much faster here.
(RM: the time element as well. Things happen in "the blink of an eye" like life reviews)
After you’ve completed the planned affirmation therapy, you’ll find this way of interaction far easier.
(RM: havent heard this term, but perhaps its related to a life review, affirming who you've been, the good you've done)

(Until I, I find my, my way back, home, home)
You’ve probably felt for many years in your former life, that you where separate from not only others , but even yourself. Now you can see that was never the case. You are actually everything and anything that you can think of. All of it is you. 
(RM: often reported. We are all connected. We may feel isolated, but its an illusion. Back home we experience how all is connected. "Like ornaments on a christmas tree" said one person)
(Until I, I find my, my way back, home, home)

(RM: people report "seeing" their home from a distance, one described it as a light pod where friends were waiting for them. But in a sea of billions of pods, they had to find their own.)
"Remember there is really only one destination, and that place is, you.
All of it.
Is you.
(RM: We are what we seek. "The journey is the destination." If everyone is connected then we are already home. So its both "finding myself" and finding my way "home" on the flipside where our loved ones await.)
(Until I, I find my, my way back, home, home)"

Written from the pov of a spirit guide welcoming Prince back to the flipside. 

It's pretty much verbatim what I've filmed people saying (over 30 cases now, examined thousands other in my books) while under deep hypnosis. I can only guess that Prince's experience with an angel wasn't an isolated incident.

Makes me wonder if purple rain came from a vision as well; many report seeing purple in the energetic makeup of their "wise elders," like a radiant light. (I know purple rain is reportedly related to an apocalyptic end of world vision, but which came first? - the color purple - in these flipside sessions anyway - are often reported as the visual energetic makeup of "wiser" "older souls" and often represent people on the "council of elders" as Michael Newton calls them).

But "find my way home" refers to not here but on the flipside, where people claim "home" is. Where you're greeted with unconditional love, and your soul mates and pals you've been incarnating with for eons.

If you want to see what transcendant guitar playing is watch this clip. George Harrison's son loves it - but Prince does what he said he loved to see other guitarist's do - bring the house down. Just standing center stage and channeling a higher power. 

Enjoy Prince at his finest.


Prince heads Home and the Angel who saved his life.

"A brain isn't the mind... and the mind isn't a soul... that's why we need the arts." Senator Al Franken in his eulogy on the Senate floor for the Purple one.

"I am so saddened to hear of Prince's passing. Prince was a revolutionary artist, a wonderful musician and composer. He was an original lyricist and a startling guitar player. His talent was limitless. He was one of the most unique and exciting artists of the last 30 years." Mick Jagger

Amazing artist. Purple ray of light. This came to mind for some reason; "Tis a far far better thing i do than i have ever done, tis a far far better place i go than i have ever been..." in a hurry to get somewhere perhaps, or to be with someone... musicians live in their music forever, whenever a note he wrote or played is heard; he's there on a quantum level. RIP

What to say about Prince and the Flipside?

Well, he's headed home.

Wonderful interview that took place in Paisley Park a couple of years ago - and the reporter was chagrined to hear that "no one knew where Prince lived."  The last line of the article was "He's gone home, wherever that is." 

Prince … ‘When was the last time you were scared?’
Property of NPG records
Article offers a rare glimpse into the world of Paisley Park with some tasty sidebars into the clever improv he kept up all these years. Oddly enough last sentence was the subject of my appearance on radio in minnesota last night. "I've filmed 30 people claim that home isn't here. It's on the flipside."

Last night, just as a coincidence (there are no coincidences, but this radio show came to me two weeks ago, so I had no idea what I was going to talk about) I appeared on "The Darkness Hour."  It's a bit like "Coast to Coast" and the hosts Dave and Tim will be substituting for George Noory this next weekend.  I haven't heard the show, but I assumed it would be a bit about the flipside.   your first hour   your second hour

But I took the opportunity to chat a bit about the Purple One who had just "left the building." I pointed out that the media will talk about his life and loves, his arriving and his departure, and most people will focus on his age (57) and how he died (to be known.)  Why do we focus on age and way of passing?  It's like focusing on how someone tripped off stage after a great performance.

Part of the reason is to make sense of our own lives. 

But as I point out, in the research, it's consistent that people "choose to come here" - choose who they're going to be and what they're going to do while they're here.  And sometimes they sign up for a journey that is shorter than one might expect - but if you allow for a moment that a person "doesn't die" - that they just have left the building - they aren't here any longer, but they still exist - then you get a better handle on where Prince might have gone.

Turns out besides being a terrific musician, he was a humanitarian, and that he donated, help thousands of people, insisting no one would know of his participation.  That unto itself is pretty amazing.

According to Van Jones on CNN, who worked closely with Prince on his projects, the man's generosity was unbounded.  We know that Prince assiduously took down mention of him on youtube - but perhaps this wasn't because of monetary issues or the internet "ripping him off of royalties" (although that has been stated in the past) perhaps there's a spiritual aspect to it.  "Don't focus on me.  Focus on the music."


Something else I wanted to note about the Purple one.  "Why purple?"  Did anyone ask him?

I found this insightful article from Nancy Dillon in 2009:

Prince reveals he battled epilepsy as a child in rare interview, until 'angel' told him he was well

Tuesday, April 28, 2009, 2:09 PM
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Prince revealed to Travis Smiley he had epilepsy as a child, until an 'angel' told him he wouldn't be sick anymore.MOSENFELDER/GETTY

Prince revealed to Travis Smiley he had epilepsy as a child, until an 'angel' told him he wouldn't be sick anymore.

LOS ANGELES - He's got the look - and a medical secret that helped shape his legendary music career.
Pop icon Prince revealed a childhood struggle with epilepsy during a rare, soul-bearing interview.
"I've never spoken about this before, but I was born epileptic," the Grammy winning singer said on the PBS show Tavis Smiley. "I used to have seizures when I was young. And my mother and father didn't know what to do or how to handle it but they did the best they could with what little they had."
Prince, 50, said the illness helped shape his over-the-top persona.
"From that point on, I've been having to deal with a lot of things, getting teased a lot in school," the Purple Rain singer said Monday night, wearing a high-collared white satin shirt and high-heeled black and white spats. "You know, early in my career I tried to compensate for that by being as flashy as I could and as noisy as I could."
A Jehovah's Witness who weaves spiritual themes through his songs, Prince said his faith also helped him cope.
"My mother told me one day I walked in to her and said 'Mom, I'm not going to be sick anymore.' And she said 'Why?' And I said 'Because an angel told me so.' Now, I don't remember saying it, that's just what she told me," Prince said.
He didn't say whether he grew out of the illness or continues to live with epilepsy, but in a song titled "The Sacrifice of Victor," Prince tells the story of a boy who was "Epileptic 'til the age of seven."
Prince was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004, the first year he was eligible. He told Smiley that he taught himself to play music after his musician father left his piano at the house when he moved out while Prince was a kid.
"When he left, I was determined to get as good as him," Prince said. "I just stuck with it, and I did it all the time. And sooner or later, people in the neighborhood heard about me, and then they started to talk about me. And it wasn't in a teasing fashion. It was more like, 'Wow, look what he can do.'"
He said the support motivated him to write his own songs.
"Once I got that support from people, then I believed I could do anything," he said.

Epilepsy! An Angel!

Wow.  Seizures as a child... that he credits with inspiring his onstage persona.  Talk about someone taking what might be construed as a negative and turning into a positive - doesn't get much better than that.

"My mother told me one day I walked in to her and said 'Mom, I'm not going to be sick anymore.' And she said 'Why?' And I said 'Because an angel told me so.' Now, I don't remember saying it, that's just what she told me," Prince said.

If I had a nickel for every time I've heard someone say in my flipside research they were "visited by an angel" that told them everything would be okay... or some variation of getting a visit from someone on the flipside who gives insight into our future... sometimes a "bright light." "Unconditional love." As I'm fond of saying; "He's not gone. He's just not here." No doubt hanging with that angel once again.

In terms of the flipside, many such stories of being "visited by an angel" who tells you that you're going to recover.  Who was that angel? Well, in the research, they're often "spirit guides" coming in disguise to help you through a difficult path.  Sometimes they're literally "angels" - people who don't incarnate, either anymore, or perhaps never had, but serve others from the flipside as avatars and helpers - and sometimes those angels are our "higher selves" - as I mentioned on the show, the research shows that about 2/3rds of our energy is always "back there; back home" keeping an eye on us.

  "He's not gone. He's just not here."

Prince has left the building.

I got to review Prince exactly 23 years ago.  I was a stringer for Variety at the time, and here's what I wrote:

Review: ‘Prince and the New Power Generation’
Rich Martini
APRIL 20, 1993 | 12:00AM PT
The King of erotic funk slammed into the Universal Amphitheatre Thursday for the start of a three-day stint. There was plenty of glitz and glam, and when the sparks settled, Prince again proved that, beyond the hype, he's a master showman.

The King of erotic funk slammed into the Universal Amphitheatre Thursday for the start of a three-day stint. There was plenty of glitz and glam, and when the sparks settled, Prince again proved that, beyond the hype, he’s a master showman.

Evening began with Prince reading a copy of the recent Los Angeles Times pan of the San Francisco tour, pretending to urinate on it with lighter fluid, and sending it to oblivion with a match as he launched into “My Name Is Prince.” More flames were to follow.

First act consisted of songs solely from his latest Warners release, which uses a symbol uniting male and female signs that hung like a flaming arrow above the stage, under which the meister of erotica played out his funkadelic fantasies.

The early show was framed around cliche-ridden scenarios; a faux sheik’s daughter, Mayte Garcia, is dragged from the audience and turned into a Power Generation funkette, and dancer Kelly Konno plays a nosy reporter who gets her comeuppance by being stripped on stage. Both sketches seemed more suited to reruns of Dean Martin’s “Golddiggers.”

Nonetheless, the top-notch footwork of Garcia, and Prince’s high voltage performance around and on top of her, served to turn these banalities into amusing sidebars to tunes like “Sexy MF” and “Love 2 the 9s.”

Massive drummer Michael Bland and zoot-suited guitarist Levi Seacer Jr. provided sharp backup when Prince wasn’t soloing on his lavender guitar or plum piano.

The second act was even higher octane, as Prince blasted off with “Let’s Go Crazy,””Kiss” and “Irresistible Bitch,” showing no signs of the flu that caused him to reschedule the first two nights of this stand.

The New Power Generation was top-notch throughout, with kudos to rapper Tony Mosley and fellow hip-hoppers Damon Dickson and Kirk Johnson. Ace tech work included roadies who seemed choreographed, a panoply of clever costumers, and a futuristic light rig, which kept the night full of eye-popping spectacle.

Prince and the New Power Generation
(Universal Ampitheatre; 6,251 seats; $ 42.50 top)
 Reviewed April 15, 1993. Band: Prince, Tony Mosley, Sonny Thompson, Michael Bland, Morris Hayes, Levi Seacer Jr., Tommy Barbarella, Damon Dickson, Kirk Johnson, Mayte Garcia, Kelly Konno.

Where has Prince gone? "He's gone home. Wherever that is."


Circling the Sacred Mountain, God and Morgan Freeman

For fans of "Flipside"  

Cover photo Jock Montgomery, Cover type by Richard Rossiter

This is the book that was in the library of the apt I sublet while working on the film "Salt​." 

I had read the book and audited Robert Thurman's class at Columbia U in '96. In 2004 I was in Mumbai filming a Bollywood script when I got an email "If you can be in Kathmandu next week you can join our trip around Mt. Kailash in Tibet." I joined the trip and documented it ("Journey into Tibet." The full version is here and costs $2.99 to view, but all pieces are free on youtube if you search for them).

At some point we were on Mt. Kailash (pictured above) and Robert told us any wish made in this sacred place "would come true." I jokingly decided I'd wish for a million dollars... or a 3 picture deal. Couldn't make up my mind, and out of my mouth came the words "I want a son." I was startled when I said it. Then three years later, driving around Santa Monica with our son, and I asked "Did you know daddy from before?" He nodded, "yes." I asked "Where did you meet me?" He said "in Tibet." Startled, I said "Where in Tibet?" He said "On the path." I thought of all the paths I'd been on - then I remembered the wish I'd made. "Was it Kailash?" He shrugged. I asked "Was it Kangra?" He nodded "yes" and said "It was Kangra." 

Where I made the wish

Kangra is the name of the path in Tibetan where I made that wish. Then a year later, subletting an apt in the West Village while working on "Salt" son found this book in the owner's library, pulled it out to show his mom. He pointed to the picture of Mt. Kailash and said "That's where I found daddy."  

Sherry called me on the set and asked "Did you know this book was here?" I didn't and had not said the word Kailash to him other than in the car. "That's where I found daddy."  From Flipside: A Tourist's Guide On How To Navigate the Afterlife​


Morgan Freeman

is seeking the story of God on National Geographic.  The series opens with an interview with David Bennett - an author ("Voyage of Purpose") who had a near death experience.  I interviewed him for the book "It's a Wonderful Afterlife"  David has a fascinating story - he doesn't call this ball of light "God" in his book - but of course since the show is about God, Morgan asks him if the ball of light is God, to which David replies - "yes."

Important to be specific here - in his written account and in the account her gave me during his interview, he saw this ball of light as "millions of lights" - and a few of them separated from the light to travel to speak with him... so in essence, you could say that the ball of light was "God" and that the slivers of light that came to visit him where also "of God."

Because in this world of trying to use language to define the inexpressable, we seem to be caught up in what the word's say or mean.  Is God a he?  Often people will say "I felt a male presence" when asked that question.  Sometimes they'll say "I felt more of a female presence."  So it depends on the person doing the viewing.

In this search of "God" or the meaning of the afterlife, they're touching upon the surface of these questions - by the nature of the medium of course.  But in essence, they jump from David Bennett's first person account of his experience with the afterlife, to Dr. Sam Parnia's work - the doctor behind the Aware project - who has studied near death experiences.

Dr. Sam talks about life continuing on for a few moments after death, and David Bennett's experience was for "15 to 18" minutes. The implication being that David's experience couldn't be "hypoxia" or some other physical event created by the brain, because the brain didn't have oxygen for quite some time.

My interview in a noisy cafe with author David Bennett

But I think they're skimming the surface here.  It's wonderful to hear Morgan's face, to see his face react to these stories, to hear his own personal journey with this work.  But by limiting the series to a search for "God" - and then lightly touching upon what people say about their experience in the afterlife, is to mix the subjects up.

In Michael Newton's interview in "Flipside: a Journey into the Afterlife" he talks specifically about the "Creator or creators" that many of his clients have experienced.  These are people under deep hypnosis who recall not only past lives, but a between lives realm where they can examine, explore and explain what they're experiencing.

As I've outlined in "Flipside" and the "It's a Wonderful Afterlife" books these reports are consistent and they're replicable.  I've filmed nearly 30 people under hypnosis, and examined other taped recordings of these sessions from different people across the globe, and what they say is consistent.  That we don't die. That our consciousness continues on. That it's here that we are deluded by "reality" as if this was the only realm in existence. That we return "home" to be with our loved ones and teachers - and are able to see our lifetimes as "performances on stage" where we learn and teach and examine all forms of energy.

I've filmed people who've had near death experiences, and seen how they can re-examine those events clearly - with more depth - I've filmed people who are skeptics, who don't believe in an afterlife, but who clearly remember previous lives and then experience the between life arena and are able to see their lives with perspective.  I've filmed interviews with people NOT under hypnosis - who by merely asking them the same questions people are asked while under hypnosis - are able to access the same clarity about past lives and the between life realm.

The point being - you don't need to have a near death experience to experience life off this planet.  You don't need to have a near death experience or be under hypnosis to access your memories of previous lifetimes or being able to talk to and hear from your spirit guides.  That you can access "new information" from them in the spirit world - meaning details that you aren't aware of, could not be privy to or never heard of - and yet turn out to be true because you've heard them from people not alive.

That's a series I'd like to work on - and perhaps one day will.  But for the time being we'll just have to hope that the people who are making these shows are able to take that one step further.  Or "One Step Beyond."

My two cents.


Defending Your Life and the Flipside

What's startling about this film is the consistent reporting that it's accurate. Michael Newton ("Journey of Souls") refers to it in my doc "Flipside" and in all the 25 cases I've filmed there are unusual reports that are either identical or oddly similar. 

"Past life Pavilion" (and its correspondent "Life Planning Session") examining your life "in front of a council of elders" where they know "everything you've ever done." 

That "hell" might be considered a difficult life here on the planet (except in this research people choose them for specific reasons), that we don't return as animals as a form of punishment (reportedly creatures have their own realms) and heaven might be considered staying back there with our soul mate, ala Meryl Streep. 

One wonders what it will be like if/when Albert experiences the same upon his departure from this stage - "oh my god, i got this SO RIGHT." 

Kudos for presaging (and writing, directing, acting in it) a film that appears to be more like a hilarious documentary of what actually happens on the Flipside. 

Again, not an issue of belief, philosophy or religion; just reporting what thousands have said (and consistently continue to do so) while under deep hypnosis, or when re-examining a near death experience (as detailed in "Its a Wonderful Afterlife" vols 1 and 2.) 

Still a funny film.

On the 25th anniversary of Defending Your Life's release, Rolling Stone asked the director to take us back to Judgment City and explore his own reasons for why the film has remained so relevant to today's audiences.

Albert Brooks: "I don't know how, where, and why the idea for Defending Your Life began; the idea had been bouncing around for a while. Stories like that sort of have to bounce. They don't come out of nowhere. I went through my own period of life with sort of everything turning upside down, and wondering, why is it this way? I went from being unafraid at the beginning of my career, in my late twenties, [to] being like the Roadrunner; I looked down and I didn't see anything. You don't wake up one day and say, "Earth ain't the best place to be." That's a brewing type of feeling.

We'd all watched "heaven" movies forever, and they always bothered me. They were just like little children's fairy tales. So I began to think more clearly that, why would anything in the universe be different than what we already see? In other words, our best indication of this vast, mysterious place are the processes that are going on right in front of us. And we see the Darwinian theories working; we see survival of the fittest working. Even in making automobiles, the better automobiles are the ones that keep getting made, so why would anything be different than that?


It intrigued me that the whole universe would be run sort of like a business. I also liked not having Earth as a place that's the best place. You don't want to go back to Earth — and by the way, they weren't threatening to send you back as an animal. It was obvious you were going to have to go back as a person and try it all over again; that was failure. So this is an alternative, but it's at least an alternative that makes some weird kind of sense to me.

"...Judgment City and the way things looked there were basically traditional matte paintings that they'd been doing since the beginning of movies. That's how they did the original Ben-Hur; just talented people painting over a city. For example, the Judgment Center, the place where we did the trials, was the Federal Building in West Los Angeles with two large annexes painted onto it, and it's just done perfectly. That never changes. You can do that today and it looks as good as it always did.

In casting the film: I met Meryl Streep at a party years and years and years ago. I think it was at Carrie Fisher's house. Meryl brought so much reputation to her life because of all these iconic roles, but when you met her, she was just so easygoing and natural. She was aware of my work, and she asked what I was doing. I told her I was making this movie, and she sort of jokingly said, "Is there a part in it for me?" I went home and thought, "Okay..." It took a lot more from the producers to make that happen, but the person that I wanted for that role was the person that I sat and talked to at that party.

So my job was to provide an environment where she could just hang out. She's the greatest character actress that ever lived, and she didn't get a lot of opportunities just to hang out, so that's what I thought could be great. She's playing somebody who's had a perfect life, and she automatically brings to that someone who is as close as you could get, someone who seemingly has had a perfect life. So all of that worked.

Rip Torn hadn't worked for a while, and the studio was a little worried because he had been through some problems and everything. We had a serious talk. The studio wanted me to go to someone safer, but Rip was one of the people that made that movie sail, and the reason is because he was unpredictable. That's why I wanted him. I saw many other actors for that part — people that I liked, people that I knew exactly what I would get — and I cast him because it may have been more work for me. But it was a good kind of work and he would give you something you didn't expect. He would just give you an attitude or a line reading or … he was just the most original kind of person, and it helped the movie immensely.

I've got a lot of favorite scenes from the movie, but I'm pretty fond of the Past Lives Pavilion. One of the things about Defending Your Life I have to mention is that the cinematographer was Allen Daviau, [who had worked a lot with Steven Spielberg]. He was brilliant. I just got a fan letter through my website two days ago — I swear to God, two days ago — that said, "I'm looking for the film that Mr. Brooks used in the Past Lives Pavilion, where the native was running through the forest. Can you tell me what film that was from?" And, of course, that wasn't from a film. All of that was shot. But the way it was shot and put into miniature? I guess I was sort of tickled that I even thought of something like the Past Lives Pavilion. I thought it was sort of a cool Disneyland ride.

And then to have Shirley MacLaine. Think about that: There is no person on this planet that can get you a laugh just by telling you about the afterlife. She had that wrapped up entirely in her personality. I met her at a hotel, I did my pitch, and I couldn't even imagine getting a "no." I must've sold it well because she did it — "Welcome to the Past Lives Pavilion." Nobody else could get you that laugh.

All of my movies had to go through the normal testing processes, and I never got E.T.-type test scores. From Real Life to Modern Romance, some of the cards were like, "What's wrong with this person?" So it was funny because this movie got like a B+ overall, but it got an A+ from young people. Literally, from 18 to 25, the cards were off the charts. I was all excited, and the studio basically said to me, "Well, we're not going to market an Albert Brooks movie to that group anyway. So it's nice, and you should feel good about it, but it doesn't matter. We're not going to release it to that group. That's a big, expensive group." And that's where the fear aspect comes in, because people at that age don't know what the hell's going on, and the movie resonated with them. It was not about life or death or Earth; I think it was about trying not to be afraid.

The idea behind Defending Your Life: Imagine if you had to sit in a courtroom and watch your life. I don't care who you are, if you committed a crime and you had to have all of your emails searched and made public, who on this planet could survive that? Nobody. Who hasn't written some angry email to somebody at 11:30 at night that, if read in court, would make you want to kill yourself?

But the interesting thing about Defending Your Life is that it's been 25 years and if you look at it on Amazon, it always sells at the same rate. And that makes me feel pretty good, because I don't think this is aging too much. I think what the movie is saying is going to stay relevant for a long, long time, because fear isn't going away.

I've had people talk about Lost in America and other films that meant something to them. But this particular movie, whatever effect it had in those original test screenings to a certain younger group, it seems to still have that. Last week, I got a letter from a parent who said their kid had memorized the whole movie. The whole movie! Now I'm not saying this is happening en masse, but sometimes, with younger people, once a movie has no electronics in it, they just don't watch it. Or even if it's not in color. They just don't relate to it. But this film does not need cell phones or any sort of modern accouterments. It still can affect you. Being afraid and not doing what you want to do is such a basic emotion.

I don't know that, any of the films that I made, I could make today. I would have to find another way to do that. It's not just me saying, "It's that the movie business." I could convince financiers that America would like me, even if they didn't, but I never could convince somebody that Korea would love Modern Romance. I just couldn't do that. [Back then] I only had one country to lie about. Now, I'd have to say, "No, believe me, China's going to go nuts over this!"

But the subjects that are the big subjects, they don't go away. Sometimes the telling of them gets modern-ed up. The thing about Defending Your Life is if you made it today, you really wouldn't make it much differently. You might not use answering machines, which played big parts in my movies, but I don't know what's in it that would be any different. I even think we were pretty clever in Rip Torn's office in that all he read were numbers. ....

... I've gotten thousands and thousands of letters of people who had relatives that were dying, or they were dying themselves, and the movie made them feel better. I guess it's because it presents some possibility that doesn't involve clouds and ghostly images. So this thing never goes away. It's a quarter of a century, but I don't think the idea behind the subject is ever going to change." Albert Brooks via Rolling Stone interview (link below)

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