The Invisible Playmate
The bible says “in my house there are many mansions”, a good explanation for this, is that put forth by spiritualist experts that this world is interspersed by others, and physicists and other theoretical thinkers have concluded the same.
That some people with training- can at times see into these other dimensions or mansions, is I think beyond dispute.
I was never invited to attend what was arguably the greatest haunting case of modern times in Britain, the “Enfield poltergeist” but did attend another classic, the perplexing case of 'The invisible playmate “.
When I was first alerted to the fact that in a quiet end terrace modern house, a young boy had an invisible friend, my reply was that so do thousands of other children including one of my own sons, and that with the passage of time these things just evaporate into the child’s memory, but imagine my dismay to be asked , does your child’s invisible friend lift him of the ground in front of witnesses, one occasion was in a crowded dental surgery?
My assistant and I set off to meet with the worried parents to get some background, and as our car pulled up, there suddenly appeared all down the road people standing at their gate’s watching us in silence, when I enquired to my colleague something must be going on, he shook me rigid by replying, “its you mate they have all heard and have been awaiting to get a look at you ” I said, “ we will go home we cannot work with an audience this size”.
However we went inside and was pleased to shut out the curious onlookers and urgently wanted to hear the parent’s story. Although listening to each one separately in the kitchen , what they said tallied well, in fact if it tallied too well , I am as a rule suspicious, but it was the boys father who convinced me both of his sincerity and the fact that his nerves were in shreds.
Boys in these cases fall usually into certain psychological types, and he was typical being quiet, introverted, lacking in self esteem, a poor communicator, emotionally younger than his years, poor at school sport, a little asthmatic, and often felt an outsider over being bullied .
So lonely children often develop these friends who as a rule are harmless, and I did not believe too much when he spoke of this invisible friend, I was only casually alerted by the fact this boy was older than these statistical occurrences, he was 10.
It is standard procedure in these matters, to ask the parents to show the child’s bare back, Hindu healers have long known that heat changes along the spine, or hair tufts can give pointers to the closest chakra, for evaluation.
This boy when questioned did say he often felt a tightening on his scalp, which is actually quite common.
The shaving of this part of a monks head, called a "tonsure" is actually to discourage discarnate (not having a physical body) beings from gripping the scalp hair during attempted possessions, and is the reason for the scull cap of the Jews.
When asking to see the boys room we all crowded in and on close examination of the wall posters to see what interested the boy, looking particularly for "trigger mechanisms" when he blurted out “he comes through that wall to see me, and he has told me not to speak to you, as you are here to send him away.
I left the room and spoke candidly to the father, and said that on some level this boy had invited and welcomed this beast and although feeding off his aura, was giving him in return some companionship, and on occasion the boy would demonstrate special powers, that were the talk of the street.
One of these powers was the exhibition of xenoglossy, which is often characteristic of possession, and involves speaking in both a different language and vocal tone, this and his ability to spew out a torrent of abuse and swearwords, with his levitation a few inches from the ground, for several seconds at a time all in slow motion were what had caused the school to say if it continued , then he would be excluded.
The particular wall in this boys room was also the focus of a smelly liquid like substance, that seeped out and ran down to the floor, I did not see this happen, but photographed the stained wallpaper and asked both parents to keep some of the substance for me in a small medicine bottle I always carried for analysis.
The boys father was asked if he had actually seen this in operation himself, and was fairly satisfied the phenomena was genuine, and he assured us categorically it was, and said the whole thing was tearing the family apart, and would pay any amount of money to see it stopped. I have had to say this many times but although I belonging to several spiritual organisations, spiritualist church’s make no charge, but so many times you can be out of pocket, to take a day or two away from work, travel etc. so as he was a financially secure I said if he wanted to give a donation I would see that the church , wrote officially and thanked him.
This was one of those rare cases where an exorcism is both necessary and urgent, most modern possession cases are now considered the province of the psychiatrist, and N.H.S. drugs.
But I did try to get it over to the boys father, that no matter how many times we got rid of what I suspected to be one of the lesser demonic entities, if his son was to invite it back again each time, then not only a stalemate situation was in embryo, but it would put his son at risk of harm for me to antagonize it. That night I telephoned a Jewish scholar in these matters and asked if in the “Genizah” which is a room put aside in a synagogue for old damaged or “special “ books, had anything which would throw light on the situation, that in brief meant any exorcism of the beast could bring about the death of the child, because of the close linkage between the two.
Next day we had what the old books call a “holding at bay ceremony” to give time for us to make our plans.
There is a saying in the intelligence services that says, “ no time ever spent in reconnaissance is ever wasted” but time was pressing. We got a message from the boy’s father saying they were moving away immediately as a Local radio station had made a mocking broadcast accusing the family of being publicity sensation seekers, and life was becoming intolerable, with sightseers etc. and so we heard no more from them, so what happened to this day I do not know.
I do know many prayers were said for the anxious parents, the shy, introverted young boy and his demonic friend. I wish them well.
T Stokes lecturer paraspiritual and eschatological studies, copyright 1997
* It should be said that the wall where the boy claimed the beast came through was an end wall with a faulty gutter, the constant spill of rain and damp to the wall can cause shapes to form on the internal wallpaper which can initiate some lower spirit contact, but it could also encourage an over imaginative child to exaggerate.
Taken from; “an exorcists chronicles”