Monday, January 23, 2012

The Legacy of J. Arthur Findlay

When renowned British physical medium Stewart Alexander wrote his 2010 autobiography* he began by confessing that as a young man he had no knowledge of spiritualism and had given little thought to life after so-called death. Reading one book changed all that for him, however, and launched him on what he labeled “an extraordinary journey.” * Stewart Alexander, An Extraordinary Journey: The Memoirs of a Physical Medium (2010), Saturday Night Press Publications (

That one book was On the Edge of the Etheric by Arthur Findlay.

As Alexander began reading Findlay’s best-selling book he recalled that “I did not suspect that my life was about to be changed forever…. [I]t had a profound effect upon the way that I had previously viewed such matters by making the implausible plausible.”

While On the Edge of the Etheric moved Alexander into a spiritual quest that would last a lifetime, the book was a springboard for its author as well. Now in print continuously for 81 years, Findlay’s first book led to many other titles that are revolutionary in their scope and impact. The man, his writings and his former home are still making a huge difference in the lives of many worldwide 50 years following his death.

J. Arthur Findlay
Born into privilege in Glasgow, Findlay was raised in a strict Calvinist home. Like Alexander, as a young man he was also incredulous about claims of spiritualists but a singular experience changed all that. In 1918 he attended his first direct voice séance with Glasgow medium John C. Sloan and during that session his deceased father and uncle both spoke with Findlay revealing particulars that only the three of them were aware of. Indeed, Findlay had shared his name with neither the medium nor other sitters and no one there knew who he was. Over time Findlay was given proof after proof that convinced him Sloan was a genuine medium, that the voices that appeared in his séances were indeed those from departed friends, and that there truly is life after death. Findlay walks the reader through his doubts and experiments step by step in On the Edge of the Etheric.

But this book was not only a testimonial to the mediumship of John Sloan – it still stands today as a basic guide to mediumship by explaining spirit communication and providing scientific explanations for it. What’s more, Findlay goes on to share an outline of what spirits have taught concerning the nature of the afterlife, the purpose of life on material earth, what happens when one dies and why all of this should matter to us. In its 80s the book remains as one of the best introductions to spiritualism that has ever been produced.

Findlay provides common sense explanations for spirit phenomena that make no appeal to the “supernatural” or “miraculous.” Everything in this world and the next is controlled by natural law, he says, and there’s nothing happening that bridges that law. He sums up the process as follows:

“… I am told that the whole universe is made up of substance of various degrees of density and vibratory activity, that this fills all space, in which life exists in varying degrees of development. What we sense here on earth is only matter vibrating within certain fixed limits. Surrounding, interpenetrating, attached to, and moving with our earth, is another world of etheric matter in a higher state of vibration. Consequently it is unperceived by our senses. In our physical world the real, or enduring, body is an etheric body, which, at the moment of our conception, commences to gather round it, or, in other words, clothes itself with physical matter slow in vibration. The etheric body is the framework on to which physical matter is attached. This etheric body is composed of substance quite in tune with the etheric matter of the next plane, but so long as it is attached to physical matter it is limited by the limitations of such matter.

“At death, however, the etheric body is released from its physical covering, and continues functioning quite naturally in the etheric world, where everything is as real to it as it was when in the physical. The etheric body is, in every particular, a duplicate of our physical body, and so it can be understood how, if conditions are given for an etherian to re-materialise his organs of speech, it is possible to vibrate again our atmosphere and make his voice heard. The mind, which controls the etheric duplicate carries over with it, I am told, everything but the physical covering. Character, memory, affection, personality, etc., go with the mind, because they relate to the mind and not to the physical body. The etheric world is, in many respects, similar to this world. Our senses there respond as they do here, but, owing to the finer structure of etheric substance, the mind can work on it in a way it cannot do here. Hence it is in this sense a mental world, but our present world is also a mental world as I tried to show in Chapter III.

“In this next state of consciousness, the inhabitants find themselves in surroundings much the same as we experience here. There grow trees and flowers, but there is no death such as we understand it, all vegetable life, instead of decaying, dematerializes and disappears from sight. The surroundings of the inhabitants are greatly conditioned by their thoughts, and so their houses and mode of life are much their own making. This, I am told, does not constitute the next state to be one purely of mental projections, because its inhabitants have the same sensations as we have, as they can feel, touch and smell the flowers, they can gather them, and, when walking in the fields, they meet and talk with their friends.

“All on the same plane, I am told, can see and touch the same things. This is the reply I invariably received, when trying to find out whether this state was objective or subjective. There are many planes, but only those on the same plane experience the same sensations. I have, myself, experienced etherians present who talked to me, but they could not see each other, though they were in the same room, the explanation given being that they were in different planes of existence. These etherians are men and women, not vaporous spirits, but real, vital and tangible people, such as we mix with every day. Theirs is not a dream world, but one of objective reality, intensely real – everything, music, art and all constructive work, being at a higher pitch than we can possibly understand.”

Findlay also describes several séance room incidents that constitute excellent proof of survival. He classes the best cases as “A1” and the next best as “A2.” All of them are remarkable and when taken together they are difficult to refute.

On the Edge of the Etheric is still in print and available here in the U.S. through (Amazon also has a Kindle edition). Used copies of previous editions are generally available as well and online sources for free e-editions include and, both being links we have provided on this blog. The ghostcircle edition is in MS Word (doc) format and the second link offers the more desirable pdf format. Unfortunately, neither of the e-copies provides the illustrations which make a printed copy more useful.

Twenty years after publishing On the Edge of the Etheric Findlay went on to issue a massive 600+ page book containing verbatim transcripts of 19 séances with John Sloan. That book is Where Two Worlds Meet and like other Findlay titles it is still available, I understand, in the U.K., but over here in the U.S. it is almost impossible to find. I purchased my used copy online through . At this writing an MS Word copy is available for download online at .

Throughout his lifetime Arthur Findlay spoke of On the Edge of the Etheric as the first in his spiritualist “trilogy.” The three books in the series need to be taken together in order to fully comprehend his description of spiritualism along with the science and philosophy that is behind it.

The second volume in Findlay’s trilogy is Rock of Truth and it mainly covers the religious aspect. Before discussing this book I want to point out that elsewhere on this blog I’ve indicated that in my younger years I was a candidate for the clergy. I suspect I may write more about it later but for now let me state that I abandoned that career path primarily because of academic scholarship over the past couple of centuries that brings into doubt many of the cardinal teachings and traditions of Christianity. In other words, much of what we’ve been told simply isn’t true – it’s the invention of churchmen centuries ago who were attempting to manufacture a durable institution. They succeeded and we have been stuck with the fallout ever since.

Over the decades I read much of this obscure information about Christian origins and I had to admit it was on target. I also knew from personal experience as well as reading that we live in a spiritual universe and that this life on earth is just a tiny part of reality. Reconciling the rejection of religious teaching with my understanding of spiritual realities was initially difficult but I breathed a sigh of relief when I read Findlay’s take on the topic in Rock of Truth. He doesn’t mince any words as he delves into the history of the Christian religion and describes how it was molded by a bunch of church leaders back in the fourth century. He then goes on to reconstruct what we know about the actual teachings of Jesus before they were carved up by the churchmen.

In the second part of the 325-page Rock of Truth Findlay more thoroughly outlines the basics of spiritualism. “Spiritualism is not the faith of a sect or a cult,” he writes; “it does not rest on tradition, nor on writings, ancient or modern. It has no ecclesiastical organization claiming to interpret God’s purpose towards mankind. It has no forms and ceremonies, pomp or circumstance. What Spiritualism stands for is a fact of the same nature as the fact that we exist. It is the only revelation that has ever come to man from a higher level of intelligence than exists on earth. It does not depend on the sayings or teachings of a past age, nor on inspired writings. It rests fundamentally on the fact that communication takes place between the inhabitants of this world and the inhabitants of the Etheric World. This is a scientifically established fact, and, once it is accepted, what follows is natural.”

Findlay goes on to elaborate further: “Those who call themselves Spiritualists believe that it can be accepted as scientifically proved that (1) The universe is governed by Mind, commonly called God. That all we have sensed, do sense, or will sense, is but Mind expressing itself in some form or another. (2) The existence and identity of the individual continues after the changed called death. (3) Communication under suitable conditions takes place between us here on earth and the inhabitants of the Etheric World, into which we shall all pass at death.”

He continues with what is known as the Seven Principles of Spiritualism: “On these three fundamental principles, which Spiritualists believe are scientifically proved, the following logical deductions are naturally drawn from the information which comes to us from those who have passed on to this larger life: (4) That our ethical conduct should be guided by the golden rule, given first to the world by the great Confucius, “Whatsoever you would that others would do to you, do it also unto them.” (5) That each individual is his own Savior, and that he cannot look to someone else to bear his sins and suffer for his mistakes. (6) That each individual reaps as he sows, and that he makes his happiness or unhappiness just as he harmonizes with his surroundings. That he gravitates naturally to the place in the Etheric World in harmony with his desires, as there desires can be gratified more easily than here on earth. And finally, (7) that the path of progress is never closed, and that there is no known end to the advancement of the individual.”

These seven principles can easily be accepted by many whether they call themselves “capital S” spiritualists or not. The sub-title of The Rock of Truth, however, brings up another topic that I hope to explore more thoroughly on this blog sometime later. The full title Findlay gave to this book is The Rock of Truth Or Spiritualism, The Coming World Religion and this not only reveals Findlay’s expectations when he penned it in the 1930s but it also raises a contemporary question, “what happened between then and now?”

Stewart Alexander, the medium mentioned at the top of this post, has spent a lifetime asking that same question and he’s come up with some answers in his autobiography. I think he’s right on target and we will explore this topic fully sometime soon on this blog.

This book is currently in print in the U.S. and the U.K.

The final book in Arthur Findlay’s trilogy is The Unfolding Universe and my personal first edition is more than 450 pages long. In it he continues discussion of the superstitions inherent in all religions and his vision for the future when the truths of man’s spirit nature become more widely accepted. Like Findlay’s other books in the series, it is easy but enlightening to read and my opinion is that if the titles were more readily available they would be impacting people much as they did when first released nearly 80 years ago.

Stansted Hall
J. Arthur Findlay (“Sir” Arthur Findlay – he was made a Member of the British Empire) no doubt inherited a great deal of his fortune but he also was a skilled business man and stock broker. He retired early and bought a palatial estate, Stansted Hall, which is pictured here. Upon his death he bequeathed Stansted Hall to the Spiritualist National Union for the express purpose of establishing a college of psychic science. This was done and the Arthur Findlay College continues to offer coursework to students who travel there from around the world.

It should be obvious by now to my readers that Arthur Findlay the man and his books rank very high in my list of topics to promote on this blog. He wrote several others which I will talk about later; each fills an important niche in spiritualism and each provides Findlay’s unique insight which is very much applicable to today. My hope is that these books will again enjoy broader circulation, especially here in North America where the materialistic philosophy is so prevalent. It’s my understanding that a provision of Findlay’s bequest to the SNU bound the organization to keep all his books in print – hopefully forever. Some titles have entered public domain hence the reprints issued by publishers other than the SNU. Online free e-books are marvelous but they are often, unfortunately, filled with distracting typos. Google e-books are scans that are much better but sometimes I’ve been reading these and find that their scanner skipped a couple of pages.

If any readers have positive things to say about J. Arthur Findlay, his books or the college, please chime in. As promised, this topic will be continued later….

Monday, January 16, 2012

Commentary On Our Links

The growth of the Internet has meant that students of the afterlife have an ever-expanding batch of resources available right at home – most of them for no cost. While there is some junk out there, we have been blessed with a wide range of quality websites that provide excellent information. I have provided on this blog (left-hand column) a list of my favorites. It is by no means complete but many of the sites in the list have additional links that can lead to even more information.

At the top of the list are two sites that I HIGHLY recommend because I use them myself on a weekly basis. The first is a site maintained by retired Australian attorney Victor Zammit who has arguably done more for proliferation of information about afterlife studies over the years than anyone else since the advent of the Internet. His site is chock full of valuable information and I urge anyone approaching these studies to read his book, A Lawyer Presents the Case for the Afterlife. You can join his e-list and get an electronic copy of the book free but it is also available in a print edition. Also consider subscribing to Victor’s fascinating free weekly email “Afterlife Report” and check out his online videos.

The next link is for my second highly-recommended site – Michael Tymn’s fortnightly blog. Mike comes very close to matching Victor’s output and I’ve always found his posts to be instructive and enjoyable to read. His specialty is the history of spiritualism and mediumship and there’s no doubt that no one alive knows more about these topics than Mike. We’ve exchanged many emails over the years and I never hesitate to refer someone his way. He also has two marvelous books out on these topics with a third on the way. Those titles are, in order of publication, The Articulate Dead (2008 – a fun-to-read history of many pioneers in mediumship) and The Afterlife Revealed (2011 – answering the question “what happens after we die” by quoting communications received from the spirit world). His new book due out in February 2012 will be Transcending the Titanic: Beyond Death's Door. It promises to be another insightful title.

Dr. Gary Schwartz (the next link) is Professor of Psychology, Medicine, Neurology, Psychiatry and Surgery at the University of Arizona and his website describes several of his books. As a scientist he has been unafraid to do research on mediumship and his 2003 book The Afterlife Experiments: Breakthrough Scientific Evidence of Life After Death details some of his amazing experiments. Those studies continue at the university and everyone interested in life-after-so-called-death owes Dr. Schwartz a great deal for his pioneering work.

Another Ph.D. who has contributed a lot is Dr. R. Craig Hogan and his website is next in our links list. His amazing book Your Eternal Self (2008) could change the world if more and more people would read it. It is described on Craig’s website and portions of the book can be read online. In it Dr. Hogan has described much scientific research that supports the notion of continuance of life after so-called death.

The next blog in our list – Ken Carey’s Blog – may seem to be out of place here and perhaps it is. However, I’ve read many of Ken’s incredible channeled books that have been kept in print for decades by Harper and his central message is that we are spirit incarnated into matter with a high purpose to fulfill. This is, by the way, identical to the message received through mediumship over the past 150 years. Ken’s blog, however, focuses on prophesies about the 2011-2012 time period. Various mediums over the past 100 years have also predicted dynamic changes ahead for our earth and humankind – and don’t forget all the predictions that emanated from Edgar Cayce’s work. Soooo, I drop Ken’s blog in here in case someone might be interested. I believe it to be the only one in the list that is not spirit communication in orientation. It has been interesting for me to read.

Listed next is Spirituality and Paranormal Studies, the website for the Academy of Spirituality and Paranormal Studies. This is a prestigious organization that has on its list of leaders a great many Ph.D.s including R. Craig Hogan listed above and university professor Dr. L. Stafford Betty (author of The Afterlife Unveiled, published in 2011). Michael Tymn is editor of their quarterly Journal of Spirituality and Paranormal Studies as well as their magazine, The Searchlight. This organization and those that follow are doing important work in the field of afterlife studies and serious students should belong to as many as possible.

The Campaign for Philosophical Freedom’s website has many good articles and features concerning mediumship and afterlife communication. The next website, sponsored by the International Association of Near Death Studies, concentrates on near death experiences and what they tell us concerning who we are and what we might expect following this life. IANDS is led by a group of highly educated individuals who are dedicated to research into near death studies.

“Evidence for Survival,” next in our list, is a shortened title for the website’s sponsor, The Association for Evaluation and Communication of Evidence for Survival. Mike Tymn’s name appears again on this site as one of AECES’s officers. An especially helpful feature of the site is their Afterlife Guide which taps many sources for short quotes from spirit concerning what we all have to look forward to on the “other side.”

The website I’ve named “Electronic Spirit Communication” is maintained by Association TransCommunication, a group doing research into the emerging field of spirit communication by means of tape recorders, computers and similar devices. I think you’ll find their information of interest because this process has the potential of making spirit contact easier and more widespread.

The next several links are resources for connecting with others and obtaining electronic copies of spiritualist books. The first is “Spiritualist Resources,” a site from Seattle that makes it easy to find spiritualist churches, online books and blogs, mediums, etc. Next comes a favorite of mine, “Spirit Writings” that has free downloadable files of dozens and dozens of fantastic spiritualist books. Next is “Esoteric Books” that also has many books online. The following four links – “Survival Books,” “Ghost Circle Books,”  “Magick Spells Books” and “The Great Question” each contain many online books for your reading pleasure. The latter site contains several from my favorite vintage spiritualist author, Arthur Findlay; you’ll read about him in later posts on this blog. The “Magick Spells” book list includes a fascinating read on independent voice and trumpet mediumship, Broadcasting from Beyond by A.E. Perriman.

An outstanding feature of the next link, sponsored by the Forever Family Foundation, is numerous audio files archived under the heading “Signs of Life Radio.”

“The Voice Box” is a site that has a lot of good information and it is followed by another favorite of mine – “Physical Mediumship 4U.” This is the brain-child of Robin Foy who now lives in Spain where he conducts regular workshops and other events to spread the word about physical mediumship. He also was the leader of the Scole Group in England that made a lasting contribution to afterlife research in the 1990s. Physical Mediumship 4U is a membership site (free) and a very active and interesting one at that. Join in and follow the chatter; you’ll learn a lot about this one rare branch of mediumship.

“Ground of Faith” is an online magazine about afterlife topics written by convinced clergy and other capable individuals. Archived copies are available. Next comes an “Afterlife Database” containing a large amount of information about this topic.

The last site in my current listing, “Debunking Skeptics Site,” was, I believe, the brain child of Victor Zammit. A number of convinced scientists have joined with him to help clear up confusion about the afterlife created by close-minded skeptics who refuse to examine the evidence. The site’s sponsoring group is known officially as the Scientific Committee to Evaluate Pseudoskeptical Criticism of the Paranormal. Spend some time here and you’ll learn a lot!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Three Amazing Books

Unless you have the good fortune to be part of a regular circle or group sitting for psychic phenomena, then the best way to learn about spirit is to read, read, read. Luckily, many of the older classics of the spiritualist movement are available free online and we will cover some of those in future posts. But recently there have also appeared a large number of outstanding books on the topic that are extremely enlightening and wonderful to read. Below I reproduce three reviews that I have written and posted on Each of these books can, of course, be obtained through Amazon.

Set aside that skepticism
Skepticism is always useful, especially when one confronts stories such as this one told eloquently by Tom Harrison in Life After Death: Living Proof. After all, Harrison himself warns his readers about frauds in the psychic world. But there comes a time when one must lay aside the skeptical attitude, think rationally with an open mind, and evaluate the source and motives of the writer. When I did that with Tom Harrison’s account there was only one logical conclusion – Harrison is telling the truth!

I had the good fortune more than 30 years ago to sit in a séance with a good medium and my wife and I went away from that with a feeling of wonder. While that experience came nowhere close to those recounted by Harrison, we were provided with precise information that nobody else in the room had any access to (in fact we had never met any of those folks before). On top of that, the “spirit” voice accurately described a unique antique clock that was ticking away on our mantle some 80 miles away and he proceeded to say he was going to “fix” it for us. When we returned home, it was fixed all right! It had stopped running and it has not resumed since. Harrison recounts a similar experience of psychic tinkering with clocks and watches but Harrison’s spirit was much more skilled with clocks than ours was.

As I examined Harrison’s claims it became abundantly clear to me that he has absolutely no motive for fabricating even the slightest minor detail in this book. He does not gain financially from his work (profits are donated to cancer victims); he does not have any personal program or organization that he’s pushing; nor is he drumming up an audience for future lectures. He is an old man wanting to leave for everyone an accurate description of wonderful experiences dating back some 60 years.

Likewise, those séances Harrison sat in so long ago in England were not public affairs and the motive for having them was as pure as any could be. Those folks were fascinated with the ability to contact their departed loved ones. They were not conjuring up the spirits of Napoleon, Jesus or Shakespeare – these were common, every-day spiritualists visiting with their departed friends and relatives. As Michael Tymn says in his review on this site, “there is no reason to assume that the author is trying to put one over on us or that his mother, the medium, was making a fool of him and her friends for many years.” To think otherwise is ludicrous.

It’s time for all of us, including our scientists and academicians, to wake up and realize that over the past 150 years an amazing record of communications with the spirit world has been accumulated. Some of the most credible has been conducted under rigorous test conditions but I would quickly place the mediumship of Minnie Harrison in that same category. This book is an amazing read and I felt last night as I completed it I felt that I was saying good-bye to dear friends – both living and “dead.”

[Note: Tom Harrison passed over in 2010.]

A scientist explores spirit communication
The French astronomer Camille Flammarion wrote, “I do not hesitate to affirm my conviction, based on personal examination of the subject, that any man who declares the phenomena [of spirit communication] to be impossible is one who speaks without knowing what he is talking about; and, also that any man accustomed to scientific observation – provided that his mind is not biased by preconceived opinions – may acquire a radical and absolute certainty of the reality of the facts alluded to.” He added elsewhere, “It is by the scientific method alone that we may make progress in the search for truth. Religious belief must not take the place of impartial analysis. We must be constantly on our guard against illusions.”

These words are particularly meaningful when examining the book by Dr. Jan W. Vandersande, Life After Death: Some of the Best Evidence. Even though Flammarion was a scientist who spoke professionally about the reality of spirit communication, he lived long ago and the tendency by many today is to discount earlier scientists as being too gullible and not in possession of the latest technology. Flammarion was not the lone spiritualist in scientific circles of his day, of course, but it is refreshing to find scientists today who are unafraid to speak out in defense of phenomenon they have rigorously tested with the use of the scientific method.

Vandersande is such a person and his book lays out quite clearly his personal experiences with spirit communication and materialization along with his evaluation of it. A reader cannot escape the fact that he, because of his education and training, is a qualified observer – someone who would not be duped by chicanery. Here is a physicist with an impressive resume who went far beyond almost all of his colleagues by investigating the phenomenon first-hand. Most scientists discount survival after death straight away and refuse to look at any evidence whatsoever. Vandersande’s approach is reasonable as well as scientific; his account carries weight and deserves to be taken seriously. Frankly, his conclusions seem to be the only ones possible.

Mediumship is Still Alive
Alec Harris: The Full Story of his Remarkable Physical Mediumship
This is a remarkable book about the amazing materialization mediumship of Alec Harris, beautifully written by his wife Louie. The reader is treated to page after page of interesting recollections of a lifetime of service by this couple, most of it given freely to those who were grieving or in need of physical healing. It is a good companion book to Tom Harrison's Life After Death: Living Proof. Both volumes present excellent descriptions of materializations in comparatively recent years which proves that the glory days of spiritualist phenomena are far from past as naysayers often allege. The section of the book that appealed most to me was near the beginning where Louie described their introduction to spiritualism and the process of development of their mediumship gifts. This shows that there are still those who are "called" to serve in this capacity and that the road to development can still be taken. Reading further one will discover the immense satisfaction mediums can enjoy when they see how their unselfish service helps those in need. I heartily recommend this book. It is a fascinating account, well written and beautifully produced.

About This Blog

The Spirit Communion Blog exists to inform the curious about spiritualism which has in the past been described variously as a philosophy, a religion and as a science. In addition to covering the basics of spirit communication I will attempt from time to time to touch on related issues arising from it, including the nature of reality and matter; our personal identity as spirit beings in the world of matter; the necessary revision of religious teachings and traditions that afterlife communication reveals; the history of spiritualism and forms of mediumship; individual spiritual growth; and much more.

My goal is not to debate skeptics or get involved in arguments; other sites do a splendid job with that. Instead, I expect to reach out to individuals like me who have a conviction that this life in matter is only the tip of the iceberg. Hopefully the blog can provide encouragement, information and rational explanations about the reality of the afterlife so readers can advance on their own spiritual path. There is a wealth of solid information available that all but proves this life on earth is just the beginning of a wonderful journey and I’m looking forward to sharing some of this with readers.

When encountering the word “spiritualism” on this blog it is to be considered in its generic sense. I do not wish the word to stand for any particular organization or religious group but, rather, to indicate a broad field of investigation and practice that surrounds afterlife studies. I have found that “spiritualism” is much more that what one sees at a spiritualist church. That being said, I hasten to add that I respect and admire all churches that are attempting to share the wonderful message that is at the core of spiritualism. The spiritualist church remains as a common ground where we can get acquainted with others who share our views and learn many things together. However, I believe the best spiritualist work has always been done in small home circles – many consisting of members of spiritualist churches but most, perhaps, being unaffiliated individuals. In recent years the presence of spiritualist churches has declined in many localities which makes the Internet and blogs like this even more important.

Today there is an abundance of both anecdotal and scientific evidence for the continuance of life after so-called “death.” It’s my experience that when one studies this, thinks about it rationally and allows it to shape belief and conduct then life here on earth takes on a new and more beautiful dimension. With this vision in sight, we launch Spirit Communion with the hope that it helps many.  – Dave Howard

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Who Am I?

Dave Howard was born and raised in Albany, Oregon USA. After earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism at Whitworth University (Spokane, Washington) he did graduate study at San Diego (California) State University. Now retired, he spent most of his working years employed as a journalist and for eight years was the anchor of a half-hour television talk show focused on agriculture and rural affairs. For several years right out of college he was employed as an elementary school teacher, a social worker and labor union field representative before returning to journalism.

In 1992 his lengthy history book People, Pride and Progress: 125 Years of the Grange in America was published. The foreword to the book was written by U.S. Representative Thomas Foley, then Speaker of the House and later U.S. Ambassador to Japan.

Howard has been a lifelong student of religion. Raised as a Baptist, he converted to the Episcopal Church in college after spending a couple of years affiliated with a Pentecostal congregation. He was accepted as a postulant for the Episcopal Diocese of Spokane and admitted to Episcopal Theological School in Cambridge, Massachusetts but at the last minute decided to leave the path to the priesthood and attend San Diego State instead. The contents of this blog will include his observations on religion and spirituality that are based on a lifetime of study and experience.

Howard also maintains a website for The Universal Message, a nonprofit religious organization he formed in 1967. That site is devoted to the life and teachings of New Thought pioneer A.K. Mozumdar (see Discussions on this current blog about spiritualism and the paranormal reflect Howard’s personal views and are not to be extended to The Universal Message or the work of A.K. Mozumdar. Howard emphasizes, however, that there is no conflict between what is recorded on this blog and the message taught by Mozumdar and he encourages all serious seekers for truth to mine the wealth of knowledge and truth that is contained in Mozumdar’s writings.

Since graduation from college Howard has remained unattached to orthodox churches; however, for several years he taught and preached regularly in a Unity Church. A firm believer in the power of New Thought teachings, he also accepts the mass of evidence supporting continuity of life after so-called death and the reality of communication with those who have already passed over to the world of spirit. He sits regularly with his wife Georgetta in a small home (spiritualist) circle that has had remarkable success in communicating with those on the “other side.”