We’re in Portland Oregon right now, and at 5am tomorrow we head off to the airport to catch a flight to Chicago, then we transfer to a flight to Buffalo, then we drive to Toronto.
On Tuesday I do an interview with John Geiger, author of THE THIRD MAN FACTOR and THE ANGEL EFFECT.
Both books detail recorded incidences where people, often under extreme hardship or duress, are visited by what John calls a “sensed presence” that helps guide them to safety, or gives them advice to help them in their moment of distress.
Here’s what Wikipedia says about the Third Man Factor –
The Third Man factor or Third Man syndrome refers to the reported situations where an unseen presence such as a “spirit” provides comfort or support during traumatic experiences. Sir Ernest Shackleton in his book South, described his belief that an incorporeal being joined him and two others during the final leg of their journey. Shackleton wrote, “during that long and racking march of thirty-six hours over the unnamed mountains and glaciers of South Georgia, it seemed to me often that we were four, not three. His admission resulted in other survivors of extreme hardship coming forward and sharing similar experiences.
In recent years well-known adventurers like climber Reinhold Messner and polar explorers Peter Hillary and Ann Bancroft have reported the experience. One study of cases involving adventurers reported that the largest group involved climbers, with solo sailors and shipwreck survivors being the second most common group, followed by polar explorers. Some journalists have related this to the concept of a guardian angel or imaginary friend. Scientific explanations consider this a coping mechanism or an example of bicameralism. The concept was popularized by a book by John G. Geiger The Third Man Factor, that documents scores of examples.
John Geiger is an academic at Toronto University. He’s also Governor of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society, and a former editor at the Toronto Globe & Mail. In other words, he’s no mug. He’s a man who researches thoroughly, and writes with objectivity.
He is not a religious man – he writes from a secular viewpoint – and yet many people whom he’s interviewed who also are not religious describe this “sensed presence” in terms of it being a Guardian Angel.
It should be a fascinating interview.
We then drive from Toronto all the way to Chicago, and there we interview Caroline Myss, who is well known as an authority on intuition. Caroline will be our last interview on this trip. We return to Australia next weekend.