Another fascinating article from Atlas Obscura -
Nicolas Cage has a history with the city of New Orleans, having purchased the infamously haunted LaLaurie Mansion, historic Our Lady of Perpetual Help Chapel, and now an unnamed tomb in the city’s beloved St. Louis Cemetery No. 1, home to the grave of another of New Orleans’ supernatural heavies, Marie Laveau. Is the pyramid a nod to the National Treasure movies? Or is it a tip-off to his alleged ties to the probably-fictitious secret Illuminati society? We may never know.
Who knew that the Lower East Side of New York had so many psychics? The Tenement Museum is offering this fascinating webinar on the subject -
Where: YouTube Live
At the turn of the last century, the Lower East Side was home to more than 1,000 people working as psychics, palm readers, and fortune tellers. One such businesswoman, Dora Meltzer, ran her palm reading studio from 97 Orchard Street, now home to the Tenement Museum. Join us on YouTube Live for a free virtual Tenement Talk with historian and Yiddishist Edward Portnoy and Tenement Museum President Dr. Annie Polland on the role of clairvoyants in the world of the Jewish Lower East Side, streamed live to YouTube from inside our historic tenement building at 97 Orchard Street.
Dybbuks are thought to be malevolent spirits that haunt the bodies of the living and make them crazy. For some this is a total superstition but for others .... who knows? Using this fear in some people, some entrepreneur created what he called "A Dybbuk Box" ostensibly holding the aura of one of these spirits. And there begins the tale .......
Finally, the truth behind the 'haunted' Dybbuk Box can be revealed
By Charles Moss for Input
In Jewish folklore, a “dybbuk” is a trouble-making spirit that possesses the living. An old cabinet that came to be known as the Dybbuk Box was bought by Kevin Mannis in 2001. Eventually, the “cursed cabinet” spooked more than a few people and sparked the inspiration for a Hollywood film. Charles Moss has the old cabinet’s origin story, from the man who sold it on eBay in 2003.
Here is more from an article in Input Magazine
I share this from In The Know.
Amie Balesky, the founder of The Balesky Experience, took to TikTok to share the heartwrenching story in a video that has since racked up over 4.2 million views. Balesky, who claims to have clairvoyant capabilities and says she uses spiritual mediation to be able to communicate with those who have died, shared that she was in front of an H-E-B supermarket when she witnessed a woman having trouble parking her car because of a rogue shopping cart that was blocking her from fully pulling into a spot.
Balesky got out of her car to move the cart, and when the woman came over to thank her, the medium says she immediately felt the strong presence of a person in her mid-twenties.
“I’m like, ‘ma’am, can I please ask you something?’ She’s like, ‘yeah,'” Balesky recalled. “I was like, ‘do you have a daughter that passed that’s between like 23 and 25? Because she’s around you right now, and you can just feel the love.'”
“The woman looked at me, took off her sunglasses and started to tear up,” she continued. Balesky said the woman then shared that she did, in fact, have a daughter who died by suicide eight years ago at the age of 24. The day Balesky encountered the mother happened to be her late daughter’s birthday, and she was on the way to purchase supplies to bake her favorite cake. “I told her I’m actually a mediator… and I haven’t felt somebody this strong in a long time,” Balesky recalled.
“She said, ‘today’s her birthday, every year I go to the grocery store and I get a little tiny cake and I put a candle in it for her, and I sing her happy birthday at night and blow out her candle,'” Balesky continued, adding that the woman graciously thanked her for her message.
TikTokers were extremely emotional over the video. “I’m crying for her,” one user commented. “That had to feel so healing for her.” “Her daughter compelled you to move the cart so her mom could park,” another user wrote. “How sweet.” “You are an angel on earth,” another wrote. “She will never forget that moment.”
According to The Balesky Experience’s website, the mission of the group is to “bring its clients peace of mind, comfort, and answers unattainable by other means.” “By utilizing her advanced skills in spiritual mediation, our founder Amie M Balesky can provide clients with accurate insight into a variety of life’s most difficult facets,” its About Us page reads. “From relationship issues to business concerns, to unresolved feelings after the death of a loved one, people across the world are often left feeling that these, and other unknowns, must remain so. They are either unaware that there is a viable path to answers or have been misled by others offering services that were disingenuous and ineffective. But answers do exist, and we at The Balesky Experience are here to provide the way.”
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There is probably nothing more fascinating or scary than the Dance Macabre which, in a time where death was all around. Wikipedia define it as consisting of the dead or a personification of death summoning representatives from all walks of life to dance along to the grave, typically with a pope, emperor, king, child, and laborer. It was produced as memento mori, to remind people of the fragility of their lives and how vain were the glories of earthly life. Its origins are postulated from illustrated sermon texts; the earliest recorded visual scheme was a now-lost mural at Holy Innocents' Cemetery in Paris dating from 1424 to 1425.
In this Atlas Obscura podcast, Caitlin Doughty, from “Ask a Mortician,” gives us a dance lesson in the two-step we were all born to do.