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Panic - a genuine example in the old sense of the word?
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snavej1Offline
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PostPosted: 26-05-2006 16:24    Post subject: Panic - a genuine example in the old sense of the word? Reply with quote

In the summer of 1994, when I was unemployed for a while, I took a walk down to St. Mary's Church in Llanfair P.G., Anglesey, North Wales, U.K. The church is centuries old and the adjoining cemetery is full - there is hardly any room left for further burials. The church is right next to a stony beach and thus only a few yards from the sea. A small stream flows through the centre of the cemetery and empties into the sea. On the beach, there is a statue of Lord Nelson or someone similar. The sea itself has very strong currents and treacherous rocks in that area - easily enough to sink ships. Many have indeed been sunk there over the years. The land around the church is protected as a conservation area, so it is at least half woodland.

I was lingering in the yard just outside the church gates, admiring the scenery and wondering what to do next. I was feeling relaxed and there were no problems facing me. The afternoon was drawing to a close and evening was fast approaching. The clouds were starting to thicken up, as if rain might come in the next few hours. Just then, I felt a tremendous dread come upon me for no apparent reason. I have never felt a fear quite like that, either before or since. I knew that I had to leave the area immediately. I walked as fast as I could up the slope and along the main road back to my parents' house. As I went, I wondered why I felt this way and why exactly I was fleeing.

I had previously heard about spirit gatherings, which tend to scare off the living. Another possibility was that I had an intuition that something was wrong at home. When I got home, I asked my mother if there were any problems to deal with. She said that everything was fine and that she had not had any worries about me that day. I can only conclude, therefore, that something near that church had compelled me to leave the site. I have been down to the church since: sometimes I find it to be OK, other times it feels a little melancholy.
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Aarauer
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PostPosted: 26-05-2006 17:59    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you are in an 'in between' state (e.g. if you were unemployed, life generally rather quiet, but not too worried about it) you are much more sensitive to the atmosphere of surroundings. Other people, in the pause where you were looking at the view and wondering where to go next, would probably start thinking, "Oh no, only another 2 days of holiday", or, "I wonder if X has been round and watered the plants", and then they wouldn't notice it. (Maybe it's even a reflex action to block out uncomfortable atmospheres.) Other times, when you went back, were you busier and more stressed?

The way you describe it, it sounds like a really strange and atmospheric place - there do seem to be quite a few of them in North Wales.
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felixgarnetOffline
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PostPosted: 26-05-2006 19:59    Post subject: Reply with quote

I know what you mean - i experienced something similar as a child on some waste ground. I posted about it here, I think it's a a thread called "Fear of Open Fields" or similar. The "panic" is totally irrational, and you never forget its impact.
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fnordishOffline
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PostPosted: 28-05-2006 03:13    Post subject: Reply with quote

i had a very similar experience. while i was in college, there was a nice little woodsy spot me and a few friends knew about. we went there often just to get away from people, or just be in an atmosphere that wasnt middle of a college campus in the middle of a city. it was nice, and just big enough, and low enough, that we couldnt see any trace of society from inside. anyhow, we went there one evening just like any other day before, but this time was weird. we made it maybe fifteen feet into the woods and just stopped. my friend and i just looked at each other and, without a word, both bolted out of there and to our dorm. there was nothing physically different or weird that prompted this, just a sudden, intense fear. i had the distinct impression of something massive rushing up the hill at us, but it definitely wasnt anything physical. weve had numerous other weird experiences in those woods afterwords, but nothing ever like that. scared the hell out of me.
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PostPosted: 28-05-2006 08:51    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have these feelings a lot i can go in certain places and get a feeling of absolute panic or dread i have never been able to explain them until recently.My ex-girlfriend told me her family where (on the female side) very psychic and very aware of spirits.So i explained to her my fear and she said "Next time it happens tell me" so a couple of days later we where crossing a bridge in the car (it happens in allsorts of places but not normally out doors) i stopped the car at her request and she got out.Meanwhile i was still sat in the car "freaking out" and when she came back she told me the bridge was full of spirits blocking the not very wide road (single lane) we turned the car round and went on our way.After a little investigation i found out there had been several fatal car crashes on this bridge and a few "jumpers" now i know most bridges have an history like this but later on the first time she came to meet my mum she said there where two people standing at the top of my mums stairs.One was a old man and a young boy.Turns out when i sold my mum's house the last person to own the house (on the deeds) was an old man who died on the top of the stairs (i don't know how none of the neighbours remembered how just that he had and where) a small boy had died there back in the late victorian age according to local papers he was pushed down the stairs by his brother accidently and the weird thing is my mum died in the exact same spot my ex had seen the old man.(I marked it on the wall with a pen just to see if i could see the ghost a refrence to where it was!!!) when the ambulance crew came they moved the body into my mums bedroom and put her on the bed and later on when i was sorting out my mums estate i noticed the pen mark was in the exactly same place my mums body was found.Anyone got any ideas about this?
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YithianOffline
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PostPosted: 28-05-2006 09:06    Post subject: Reply with quote

Terryt77 wrote:
she told me the bridge was full of spirits blocking the not very wide road (single lane) we turned the car round and went on our way.After a little investigation i found out there had been several fatal car crashes on this bridge and a few "jumpers"


I would prefer to specultate that your panic, her judgement of spirits, and perhaps the thoughts of unfortunate jumpers and drivers, are all differing modes of perceiving the same (unknown) phenomenon. This could be anything, perhaps something deep in the unconscious. A remnant of former fight or flight insincts seems - to me - more credible than a wholesale invocation of spirits with little evidence.


Last edited by Yithian on 28-05-2006 11:09; edited 1 time in total
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Anonymous
PostPosted: 28-05-2006 10:34    Post subject: Reply with quote

A lot of research with people who have regular forms of panic attacks (for example, phobias) indicate that it is the fear of having the panicky feelings rather than the fear feeling itself that causes the major symptoms. I agree with Yith, it is more likely that something perceptual has been 'processed' in a manner that produces a fight or flight response. This feeling is then re-interpreted by (in about 96% of the population) by areas of the left hemisphere of the brain into 'a solution'. This avoids such things as cognitive dissonance and, depending on the person and their interpretation, makes 'sense' of the world for them.
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PostPosted: 29-05-2006 20:31    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have those panicky feelings as described in the OP quite often, but then again, I'm bipolar.

I tend to agree with the previous 2 posts. Maybe the combination of approaching evening and a potential storm coming in triggered some response? Especially if there could have been a(n unconcious or subconscious even) memory tucked away somewhere that picked up on any of the sensory experience.

The atmospheric changes around nightfall and approaching rain, especially seaside and away from your normal environment, strike me as particularly charged with potential to trigger all sorts of unexpected feelings and responses.
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Anonymous
PostPosted: 30-05-2006 11:01    Post subject: Reply with quote

theyithian wrote:
Terryt77 wrote:
she told me the bridge was full of spirits blocking the not very wide road (single lane) we turned the car round and went on our way.After a little investigation i found out there had been several fatal car crashes on this bridge and a few "jumpers"


I would prefer to specultate that your panic, her judgement of spirits, and perhaps the thoughts of unfortunate jumpers and drivers, are all differing modes of perceiving the same (unknown) phenomenon. This could be anything, perhaps something deep in the unconscious. A remnant of former fight or flight insincts seems - to me - more credible than a wholesale invocation of spirits with little evidence.


You have a good point there theyithian i really wouldn't speculate on what it is but going on the whole "past lives" idea you could be right maybe it's just something rom childhood?Maybe when i was a baby something happened in the places i go to?It seems just to be a local thing and hasn't hapened anywhere else maybe it is a a memory i have forgotten or maybe just a recolection of something i was told or saw in that place.
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snavej1Offline
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PostPosted: 30-05-2006 15:53    Post subject: Panicky Pete Reply with quote

Wales can be very atmospheric in places. There are so many ghost stories also - I have read hundreds. I seem to remember another feeling of foreboding further along the coast, next to an old abandoned church in the woods. Old churches have been the centre of thousands of people's lives, so it is natural that they would congregate there after death.

Tiredness and relaxation cause people to let down their guard, so that they perceive more of an atmosphere to a place. It seems to be the case for me - being preoccupied naturally drives out other concerns.
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PostPosted: 30-05-2006 20:28    Post subject: Reply with quote

Only once have I ever felt overwhelming yet still inexplicable panic. I was with some friends travelling in what was then Yugoslavia and when we arrived in Dubrovnik, an ancient town on the coast, we decided to do our own thing for the afternoon and meet up the next day.
The harbour area was full of women, many of them elderly meeting the boats and offering travellers rooms. One such individual had a cheap room and I followed her up the steps and passages of the old town.

It was late afternoon and I was tired from travelling so I got out a book and lay on a bed in a small room separated from her quarters by a curtain. The book was a P.G. Wodehouse comedy and I defy anyone to find less macabre literature. Nevertheless after about half an hour an overwhelming sense of dread filled me. I tried to banish it, not least because it was too late to start looking for accommodation.
I tried to dismiss it and read the book but the atmosphere of the place had become so vile and malevolent that I ran from the place and slept the night on the beach.
When I caught up with my friends early the next morning I was still too terrified to return for my belongings alone. We went in together and the expression of the old woman suggested, if I'm not being fanciful, that it wasn't the first time such a thing had happened.
In hindsight it sounds ridiculous but no amount of reward could have tempted me sleep in that house a moment longer.
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GunnlodOffline
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PostPosted: 30-05-2006 21:06    Post subject: Reply with quote

Has anyone else ever had a familiar place suddenly "turn" on them?

Back in the mid-70s when I was in junior high I lived in a house across the road from a big cornfield in Illinois. At the edge of the field about 1/2 a mile from my house was a small woods with a pond and a derelict barn--kid heaven. I used to play there all the time with my nextdoor neighbors who were roughly my age. At the far end of the woods, separated by a tractor path was a circular grove of trees. My friends and I didn't usually go into the center of the grove in the summer as it was very swampy and infested with mosquitos, but we often clambered around in there in the winter. One summer we were having a long drought and as the swampy part of the grove had dried up my friend, her little brother, and I decided to explore. We hadn't dot very far into the grove when we began to feel very uncomfortable. The air was strangely still and heavy and suddenly I was overcome witha feeling of dread and something inside me said get out now. I looked at y friends and could see they were feeling the same as I was. Without saying a word we legged it out of the grove and didn't stop until we were back in their front yard.

With the resilience of kids, we still used to play in the woods after that but I don't think we ever went back into the grove.

I had never felt anything like it before, or, thankfully, since. Writing this I can still remember the stark unreasoning panic I felt and feel the weird stillness of the air that day.

I have no idea what was behind it--sacred groves a pretty thin on theground inLake County--but it was definately the most frighteningthing that ever happened to me. Doesn't sound like much as I read it back, but the feeling was so strong and overwhelming
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PostPosted: 31-05-2006 03:14    Post subject: Reply with quote

When walking in the woods, especially at twilight, I've often encountered a sense that the woods themselves - trees, plants, soil, animals, everything - have a collective awareness that I'm there. I've sometimes felt like I was walking through a crowd and, as I passed various entities in the collective, they were whispering each to the next about my passing. "Who is he? What does he want? Does he mean ill or well? What is he doing here? They don't usually come here during the between time."

I like to think that this 'awareness' or, if you will, collective 'intelligence is a sort of Emergent Property of the local ecosystem itself, a kind of consciousness arising (as they tend to do) from the many mechinations of a complex system. It's not necessarily good or bad. It just is.

Back to the point, I've found that, whenever I feel the beginnings of dread, all I have to do is talk to the woods mentally and tell them I mean them no harm, that I'm just passing through and that I'll leave everything as it was when I came. Usually, within moments, the dread passes and I begin to feel protected where, just moments before, I felt threatened.

(Lest anyone think I'm mad, let me assure you that I've recently been confirmed by a duly licensed professional as being quite sane.) Very Happy
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snavej1Offline
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PostPosted: 01-06-2006 12:31    Post subject: Panic - a further thought Reply with quote

My 'panic' experience in 1994 (see first post) felt similar, in a way, to one of the dreams I had of my recently deceased mother (see 'Mother's subtle messages from the other side' thread).

I dreamt that I was meeting her again - she was coming down from Wales in the car to visit me in London. It was something I dearly wanted but, when she embraced me, I was unable to stay in the dream and woke up immediately, feeling very sad.

Perhaps it was a kind of repelling effect, like two magnetic poles with the same charge. This could be a mechanism to prevent spirits and the living from interfering with each other's destinies.
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again6Offline
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PostPosted: 19-08-2006 20:35    Post subject: Reply with quote

T.C. Lethbridge detailed an occasion involving spontaneous feelings of dread and foreboding experienced by himself and his wife while they were walking near clifftops overlooking the sea. Lethbridge reached the conclusion that water (visible or perhaps subterranean) plays a significant role in many such instances.

When I was a kid, a gang of us roamed around the undeveloped land at the bottom of the street. We knew it all like the backs of our hands. We were uncomplicated, active, adventurous and used to go at everything full tilt until dark. There was everything: bush, sand-hills, tracks, water-holes. We had a fantastic time, making 'forts'; forming rival factions and fighting behind barricades, lots of fantasy play.

There was one spot we avoided however, even though it was one of the best with its grassy overhang and clean white sand. It would have made a perfect spot for so many games. Yet we detoured around it, automatically. We never discussed why we didn't play there. We didn't need to; we just knew, in the way kids do, that there was something wrong with that particular spot.

Once or twice, my sister and I went against our instincts and tried to make a cubby-house there; tried to play there; tried to ignore the awful 'feeling' of the place. We couldn't stick it out and soon dashed away. Each time our gang was racing through the bush and I saw that gorgeous little green and white oasis, I used to wish it 'felt good', because it looked so nice and perfect and I would have liked to play there.

But it just felt horrible, threatening, dark -- even though it looked so nice on the surface. So we automatically detoured around it, like a shoal of fish, without a word to each other.

As an adult, I've found myself occasionally in spots that instantly felt horrid. There simply are places like that and it makes sense to stay out of them.

We should go with our instincts. That's why we have them. When we tune our instincts out, we're losing, not gaining. I made that mistake. I listened to people's 'logical' 'sensible' explanations for things which are often quite beyond dismissal. I wanted to be like other people; cool, rational, controlled, 'mature', 'normal and ordinary' etc. I didn't realise I was becoming more dead than alive, like all those emotionless robots I saw in the streets, on buses and trains etc. their faces like blank masks in their attempts to appear aloof and therefore 'kewl' and 'superior' -- when in fact, I realise now, they felt inferior, inadequate, lost and frightened.

I DID kill my natural instincts, to a degree. Stupid thing to do.

We're all different. All places are different. We feel differently about different places at different times. There is no such thing as 'one size fits all' when it comes to instincts, sensed-atmospheres, sense of danger or foreboding or warning or panic or anything else.

We developed instincts for our own protection and those instincts will and do protect us, if we let them.

None of us is 'ordinary'. 'Kewl' is for fools. It's ridiculous trying to appear more dead than alive in the hope of appearing 'sophisticated'. We'll all be dead soon enough and we don't need to practice for that while we're alive.

If something feels 'bad' to YOU -- follow those instincts and get out of there. None of us needs to prove anything to anyone else. There's no need to explain or apologise.

If something TASTES bad or rotten, would we be silly enough to continue eating it ? Then why hang around a place when your instincts are telling you to leave?

We don't need to explain or rationalise our instincts to appease others.

So, follow your feelings, whatever they are. They're YOURS and they're right for you at that particular time. That's all there is to it.

Our entire 'sophisticated, technologically advanced civilization' could come to a grinding halt inside five minutes. No water, no electricity, no communications systems. Bang. People panicking in the streets and ripping each other apart for the sake of a bottle of water in a mob-plundered supermarket. Useless empty vehicles stretching for miles, all law and order gone.

Then, it would be right back to the law of the jungle, with the timid hiding behind locked doors and those doors being smashed down by roaming gangs armed with lumps of wood.

The difference between life and death then would be our instincts, the way it was when we were back living in caves.

So listen to your instincts and that will encourage them to grow stronger and will teach you to trust them more and more.

Some people inherited poor eyesight or poor co-ordination or weak instincts.

Others inherited strong instincts. They're a gift. We should value and hone and protect them and let others do as they want with theirs.
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