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LucyGransnet (GNHQ) Wed 01-Apr-15 19:10:08

If angels are real, what else have we got wrong?

Following her first, and hugely popular, guest blog post on Gransnet, Hattie Edmonds is back with more otherworldly experiences, angelic or otherwise. Add yours to the thread below.

Hattie Edmonds

If angels are real, what else have we got wrong?

Posted on: Wed 01-Apr-15 19:10:08


Lead photo

What else are we missing?

'Angels? Reality or a load of old tosh?' was the original title for the Gransnet blog post about the possible existence of angels, and when I wrote it, I didn't expect for a millisecond that it would get such a massive response. The thread has been running for over five months now and still the extraordinary stories are winging their way in.

So, recently I sent an email around my friends to see if they'd had any similarly inexplicable experiences. Within forty eight hours my inbox was jammed, but for obvious reasons of space I've had to select just two from the dozens of replies.

First is Sophie, who was incredibly close to her mother and was finding it very difficult to cope after her death. When some friends invited her and her family for a week's holiday in a place called Silver Island in Northwest Canada, she was unsure of whether to go so soon after the funeral, but eventually she accepted.

One morning, she woke feeling particularly sad and set out to row across the lake to Silver Island. On the way there, she was suddenly filled with a sense of peace, feeling that her mother was "somehow very close". Arriving back at the house and still feeling that her mother was very much with her, she went into the kitchen and there on the breakfast table was a copy of the Toronto Globe and Mail newspaper. She picked it up and it fell open at a photo of her mother along with a full-page obituary.

To this day, Sophie has no idea why an obituary of her mother, Simone Mirman, should appear in the Toronto Globe and Mail newspaper. Granted, she had been a very talented milliner who had lived in France and once made hats for the royal family, but was that enough to merit an entire page along with a photo?

But if we dare for a moment to believe that angels really do exist, what else about life - and death - might we need to rethink?

"I’m a very rational person," said Sophie, "but I know it was a message from my mother… her way of saying goodbye."

And then there's Diana, a mate from my yoga class, who described an incident from seven years ago, when she was driving with her then-husband along the motorway at night. He’d had a bit to drink and had asked her to stop so he could have a pee. She told him it was too dangerous, but he insisted so she eventually gave in and pulled over onto the hard shoulder, whereupon he jumped out of the car, weaving across the motorway towards the other side.

Diane raced after him and was halfway there, still in the middle of the second motorway lane when she saw a pair of lorry headlights hurtling straight towards her. It was then that she blacked out. When she 'woke up', she was standing in her garden back in London. Family and friends were gathered both outside the house and inside, although nobody was saying hello to her. So she pushed her way into the house, to the sitting room, in the centre of which was a coffin. She walked over and peered inside.

Staring down at the body laid out, she saw it was the exact double of her. At this point, the eyes of the 'other' Diane snapped open and she saw the whole story of her life playing out in front of her, like a film. She felt herself being born (a very visceral experience, apparently), saw herself as a child walking to school with her best friend, as a teenager, then as a twenty-something in her first job, right up the present day. When the film ended, she heard herself say "I am going to be thirty six in ten days time, what have I got to show for my years?"

Then suddenly, the 'real' Diane was awake again and standing on the motorway. But this time she wasn't in the middle anymore. "It was as if someone had physically moved me seven or eight meters, back onto the hard shoulder. Yet the lorry’s headlights were in exactly same position as they had been before. Seconds later it thundered by, missing me by meters.

"I still can’t work out how I could have moved that distance in what could only have been a split second," she says, "all I know is that the experience made me completely change my life."

Several years ago, I would have thought such stories were simply the result of over-active imaginations. But now, at the magical age of 51, I’ve started to feel differently. With the anecdotal evidence growing, it’s not quite so easy to brush aside anymore. But if we dare for a moment to believe that angels really do exist, what else about life - and death - might we need to rethink?

Hattie Edmonds' first novel Cinema Lumiere is out now and available from Amazon.

By Hattie Edmonds

Twitter: @HattieHEdmonds

westieyaya Wed 01-Apr-15 20:56:46

My darling husband died, peacefully, four hours before my granddaughter was born. She became seriously ill after her birth and for a few days her life hung in the balance before starting to recover. She is now a delightful, perfectly fit two and a half year old. We believe that her grandfather died on that day to be the angel looking out for her.

angel152 Thu 02-Apr-15 00:00:36

Hi there I just want to tell you that angels do really exist ..I have seen 2 in my life time ..also there has been so many miracles ..that have helped me ..and saved me ...people write about Angels in there books but as for all the angel books I have read ..these authors ..write about how other people have seen Angels ...but never experinced these miracle first hand for themselves can honestly say I have ..and that for me was and is a miracle

soontobe Thu 02-Apr-15 09:06:46

We have got a whole heap of things wrong.
Not our fault really.
A lot of humans dont trust a lot of things that they cant see.

Nelliemoser Fri 03-Apr-15 10:19:57

Oh Dear! there were witches flying over my house last night. and fairies at the bottom of my garden.

In times of great stress danger or bereavement people cannot always think straight. Any apparent miracle, or lucky escape gets pushed up in the mind as having been something supernatural.

rosesarered Fri 03-Apr-15 10:30:28

Exactly what I thought too Nellymoser,what a lot of rubbish those stories are!

Elegran Fri 03-Apr-15 10:38:01

If it all goes wrong, it was the fault of the incompetent doctors, lawyers, politicians.

If it comes right when it seemed all was lost, it was angels.

Greenfinch Fri 03-Apr-15 10:38:08

I can't agree rosesarered. I am not so sure.

Grannyknot Fri 03-Apr-15 10:39:39

... but what does it matter, if it makes people feel better? Or helps them to deal with painful life events?

I walked past our village bakery this morning, it has closed since the owner died a month or so ago. His family have made a shrine for him in the window, with flowers, photos, letters written by his grandchildren and a there is also a long (I presume Bible verse) about Lazarus risen from the dead and at the side of Jesus etc. I looked at it all, read, digested and really understood that it could be truly comforting to think like that.

Someone recently on a thread called it "magical thinking" (I think it was Katy) and I've read the Joan Didion book. I like that. I've gone through periods in my life when my thinking had to be magical to survive.

Greenfinch Fri 03-Apr-15 10:39:59

Too many generalisations in these comments.

Greenfinch Fri 03-Apr-15 10:41:47

Not yours *Grannyknot !

Soutra Fri 03-Apr-15 10:51:32

Such profundity (not greenfinch, grannyknot, Elegran, nelliem or roses either.

I do agree about "if it makes people feel better" just as long as it is not thrust at me aggressively. Such reactions are a personal response to bereavement and usually at a time of extremely heightened emotion. So not knocking, but not for me.

rosesarered Fri 03-Apr-15 10:56:49

Well, none of us can be sure what is out there of course, I am not denying that there may be Angels , but that the two stories given in the OP are just dreams/wishful thinking/possible lies.Our brains interpret things the way we would like them. a feeling of great peace and joy is one thing ( I have experienced that myself ) and it feels that it comes from outside not inside, but all the other things are either co-incidence, or something natural.The obituary mentioned her mother was French and fairly well known , Canada does have a lot of French speaking people!I have heard people say a butterfly or some such thing is a visiting departed DH, you know, people just want to believe these things, it is comforting to them.No harm in it, but the rest of us don't have to believe it as well.I think that there may well be life after death, but that is another thing altogether.

Falconbird Fri 03-Apr-15 11:02:20

I've posted on Do You Believe in Angels about the occasion when I was presented with a bunch of flowers by a group of young men a few months after my DH died.

"There are more things in Heaven and Earth Horatio" (probably a misquote but very true.) We are very clever and very evolved but not as clever as we think we are as a human race. Our view of reality could be very narrow.

I have very sensible nurse friends who have amazing stories about the dying and supernatural events or should I say spiritual events surrounding them.

Greenfinch Fri 03-Apr-15 11:29:46

I agree Falconbird .We have finite minds and should remain agnostic at the very least. .I find the sharing of ideas very interesting and very helpful. After all we cannot know but we can believe what is in store for us. Can a caterpillar have any idea what it is like to be a butterfly ?

Grannyknot Fri 03-Apr-15 11:31:46

soutra but nothing on here is aggressively thrust (thrusted?) at anyone, all it takes is not to click on the link. smile

Faye Fri 03-Apr-15 11:53:22

Soutra if it's not for you why on earth do you read threads like this, much less comment. confused I can't think of anything more boring than to read a whole thread about something I have no interest in.

thatbags Fri 03-Apr-15 12:27:36

We're allowed to get things wrong. We're only glorified apes. Plus... IF is a very important word.

Mishap Fri 03-Apr-15 12:55:11

The human mind seeks patterns and solutions. It does not matter whether they are real as long as they do the job and make someone feel better like the placebo effect) - as long as they don't insist everyone else believes it too.

loopylou Fri 03-Apr-15 12:59:36

I absolutely agree Mishap
I've seen/heard things I can't understand; each to their own and if someone gains solace and comfort then that's a bonus.

Faye Fri 03-Apr-15 13:15:05

This is not about angels but thought it fits here.

DD phoned me last Thursday to tell me she had a spooky experience at work the night before. She is a nurse and works at a nursing home in a very small country town. She was working on the afternoon shift and was working with her friend Bec and they heard someone walking along the passage, DD who was facing the door looked up and saw a man walk quickly past. All the residents were in bed and they immediately looked out the door and no one was there. When they had finished what they were doing they told the head nurse what had happened. The head nurse and another nurse then searched around the nursing home. All the elderly residents were in bed. Later DD and the other three nurses on duty were in the office and DD, the head nurse and Bec heard very loud footsteps walking quickly towards them but they couldn't see anyone. The other nurse a Greek woman didn't hear the footsteps. DD said they were scared but the head nurse and Bec searched the nursing home and couldn't find anything. They were really rattled and called security from the main town thirty kilometres away to come and check for them.

When the next shift started at 11pm the head nurse spoke to another nurse about their scary night. The other nurse told her there had been reports since Christmas of some of the other nurses also seeing the figure of a man walking around.

DD thought it interesting the Greek nurse who does not believe in ghosts and is very religious didn't hear the loud footsteps the other three women heard.

Faye Fri 03-Apr-15 13:20:51

It seems to me Mishap it's those who have never had any experiences who insist to those who have, that there is no such thing.

Elegran Fri 03-Apr-15 13:24:25

And vice versa,of course - it depends on past experiences.

loopylou Fri 03-Apr-15 13:28:03

I'd have scoffed at the idea of ghosts until something happened, definitely opened my eyes and mind.

thatbags Fri 03-Apr-15 13:34:55

I loved the ghost stories of M R James that our English teacher used to read to us at the end of term.