Friday, 26 June 2020

Faking Ectoplasm: A Practical Demonstration

So the other day, for the seminar I did about the Gordon Higginson controversies, I decided to conjure some ectoplasm, the way the old school mediums did it. Here's what happened.

After having done ectoplasm, I decided to try spirit manifestation.

That second video took about seven takes. Not shown is the take where the spirit emerges from the curtains, trips over its own ectoplasm and falls flat on its face with an unghostly crash. 

I mean, obviously, what you're looking at is a person with a sheet on their head, pretending to be a ghost. Don't underestimate that – in a dark room full of people who are expecting to see dead loved ones, and hear dead loved ones, there's a much higher chance than you would think that they will in fact see a spirit, even they were looking at a person with a sheet on their head. But where's the sheet? When parapsychologist Barrie Colvin investigated Gordon Higginson in 1974, he couldn't figure out where it was either. And then realised that one chair in the room was different to all the others. And that was the chair that was moved into the manifestation cabinet after each meeting started.

And he looked at the chair, and within 20 seconds found what was hidden in it. 

Cheesecloth (or muslin if you prefer)is great stuff. It's light, it's got a loose weave and it's absorbent (which is why it's absolutely the best thing to mop up baby sick, fact fans).
When it's wet, it bunches up really tightly, and you can mould it. Here's the same amount, wet.
The old school physical mediums would sort of get it wet and scrunch it up into a tight sausage and feed it down their throats. As you can see from the video, I, not an expert at this, had a great deal of trouble keeping it down. The vomiting of the ectoplasm was only half-theatrical.

And that's how you make ectoplasm. 

Anyway, this is one of the many subjects I'm talking about in my seminar series this Summer. On Monday 29th, I'm dealing with Identity Horror, as I approach The Question in Bodies

You can find the whole program here and support my Patreon (which gives you season tickets, archive videos of past talks and advance views of my other work) here.

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