The Helpful Spirit Go-Between

When I think of the late Susy Smith, author of some thirty books about parapsychology and life after death, I think of James Taylor’s song ‘You’ve Got a Friend’. As it turned out, she was a friend not only to me but to all those seeking verification of life after death and of Spirit’s willingness to hep and guide us.

When I first met Susy, she was eighty-five years old and preparing to die. And as she was fond of saying, she couldn’t wait to die so she could prove to the world – including me – that she was still here.

THE SACRED PROMISE Gary Schwartz

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However, I could never have foreseen, or even imagined, the creative and extraordinary proofs that Susy would subsequently provide from the other side about life after death and the active role that spirits can continue to play in our lives. As part of my personal quest to discover if Susy was still here and would continue to play a meaningful role in my life, she ended up revealing a new research protocol for exploring the apparent reality of Spirit and its possible benefits for all of us.

I continue to find it remarkable how what I do in my personal life – particularly related to Spirit – ends up seemingly informing and advancing my professional concerns. It could be because the mind or ego separates professional from personal as it does alive from deceased, while Spirit insists on one unified whole or continuum.

Susy was tough. If she needed to assert herself, she would. And she was not about to let me misinterpret her beliefs, whether they were valid or not. Since this was her persona while physically alive, there was good reason to anticipate that, if her consciousness did survive death, she would continue to assert herself in this way.

Furthermore, if anyone was going to insist, after they died, that I not misinterpret genuine communication from the other side as being explained by telepathy, or that mediums didn’t always read dead information from the vacuum of space, it would be Susy.

If Susy could find a way to prevent me from misinterpreting what was really occurring, she would do it. Her pragmatic approach is a model for everyone seeking the truth about afterlife contact and how not to fool one’s self.

Well aware that I was an orthodox agnostic, Susy knew it would take a lot of evidence – both in and out of the laboratory – for me to conclude that her consciousness survived and there is continued presence of Spirit in our lives. So Susy provided the evidence, in spades.

Surprise, surprise, I’m here
Within twenty-four hours of Susy’s death – she was eighty-nine – on February 11, 2001, I began conducting blind readings to see if mediums could obtain evidence of Susy’s continued existence. These were not university investigations or experiments; they were private investigations conducted in my personal life, or self-science, as I call them.

Though these readings, on the whole, were remarkable for their accuracy and specificity, they did not in and of themselves prove that Susy’s living consciousness continued after her death.

However, within a month or so of Susy’s passing, I received a surprise email from a then-unknown purported medium, whom I will call Joan. Joan claimed that she had been psychic since childhood, and though she strived to live a normal, non-psychic life most of the time, deceased people still showed up unannounced in her house every now and again.

She then reported that a deceased older woman named Susy was hanging around her house, and that Susy had important messages for me. Joan said she would like to learn what, if any of it, was correct.

I determined that more than eighty percent of it was not only factually accurate, but it sounded like Susy as well; and I realised that the specific content related directly to me could be separated into two categories.

The first I called ‘watching-over’ information. This was about me in my present life, like ‘Susy shows me that you recently experienced X.’ The second type was what I termed ‘predictive’ information, pertaining to me in the future, like ‘Susy is showing me that in a few days Y will happen to you.’

I proposed to Joan that we conduct an informal investigation with me acting as a private person, who happened to approach his personal life as a scientist, and who wanted to know whether this was Susy or not.

Someone watching over me?
I suggested that five mornings a week, Joan would agree to contact Susy and ask her two questions: 1) What had Susy witnessed as happening to me in the previous twenty-four hours – the watching-over information. 2) What did Susy foresee happening to me in the upcoming twenty-four hours – the predictive information.

Joan would then email the information she believed she had received from Susy, then I would score it. Since most turned out to be ‘watching-over’, we focused our attention on it.

I decided that if I purposely did novel things and experienced rare events and Joan reported these activities supposedly via Susy, this kind of unique reporting could be meaningful. I decided to begin the watching-over experiment by watching a novel movie in a novel way.

I watched the baseball movie Field of Dreams – note that I rarely watch baseball – decided to order in Chinese, something I hadn’t done for two or three years, then watched the movie and ate my Chinese dinner in bed – three things I have never done together.

The following morning I read the email from Joan: ‘Susy is showing me something about baseball; you were watching baseball last night. Susy is showing me that you are eating some kind of foreign food.’

What came next strongly captured my attention: ‘I don’t understand this, but Susy shows me that you are eating while reclining. Does that make any sense?’

We continued our personal exploration five days a week for more than two months, and the information averaged around eighty percent accuracy. Sometimes it was truly uncanny, especially when predictive information would show up in the form of warnings. One morning Joan wrote that Susy claimed that I needed to check the tyres on my car. I did not act upon her purported request. Later that afternoon, I discovered in my laboratory’s parking lot that my car had a flat tyre. I decided to have all four tyres replaced.

All told, it seemed reasonable to conclude that at least something psychic was transpiring. However, as reliable and dramatic as this evidence was, it was not by itself sufficient evidence to conclude that Susy was actually watching over me and sometimes giving me useful warnings.

It was possible that Joan was merely being very psychic, engaged in remote viewing as well as precognition – the ability to foresee future events. However, what happened next in this particular self-science venue was beyond my wildest imagination. In fact, it ultimately became a transformative discovery, provided by, of all people the deceased but spiritually alive Susy Smith, a spirit interloper par excellence…

From The Sacred Promise, © 2011 by Gary E Schwartz, published by Atria Books/Beyond Words, abridged.