Have you ever had a streetlight mysteriously turn off as you passed under it? How about having it turn back on after you’ve moved on? Does it happen often?
Apparently some of us have it happen quite often.
So much so the phenomenon has a name: Street Light Interference or SLI. This term was coined in the late 1980’s and a study, performed by Hilary Evans, can be read in its entirety, in PDF form, here: http://www.assap.ac.uk/newsite/Docs/sli.pdf
Examples given are anecdotal, but include: “I once blew out 7 lights in one weekend at a friends house” and “Then one February night I was walking through the bitter cold and snow through downtown Colorado Springs, feeling quite sorry for myself and actually getting angry. As my frustration with my situation roiled to the surface, the street lights began to go out. Not just one at a time, but five or six at a time. As I walked down the street, more lights went out. I felt filled with excitement, as I looked back at the two city blocks of dim street lights.”
But that is not the only shocking revelation I have today! Similar phenomenon have been around for…ever?
It has been called High Voltage Syndrome or HVS (normally I would link to an interesting source here, but the only two that seemed worthwhile shared about 80% of the same information, so I am sure one plagiarized the other, but I don’t know which, so I choose not to support either to avoid the risk of supporting the wrong one.) The people affected have been called Electric People, Magnetic People, Human Spark Plugs, and, possibly, Saints.
There have been some interesting things attributed to HVS. Unfortunately I have had a hard time tracking down original sources for any of these, but I can pass on secondary ones.
A great article at amasci.com includes 1967 reports of a man named Brian Clements, nicknamed ‘Flash Gordon’, who was always so shocking, he had to touch metal furniture to discharge before he could touch anyone else. And of Grace Charlesworth, who after 40 years of living in the same house suddenly started receiving horrible shocks that sometimes spun her around and caused her head to shake. Another source I was unable to verify reported Mrs. Charlesworth only experienced this in her house or her yard, but had no problems in other places.
Unexplained Phenomena: A Rough Guide Special reports of a woman in 1846 France who, for ten weeks, dealt with objects being repelled from her touch. “The slightest touch of her hand or dress was enough to send heavy furniture spinning away or jumping up and down…”
Reports such as these can easily lead to the speculation of the origins of Poltergeist activity.
And then there are the reports of the visual phenomena.
Unexplained Phenomena: A Rough Guide Special also reports that the Encyclopedia of Psychic Science recounts the story of a baby, who lived only to the age of nine months, who shocked anyone who touched him, and who shot luminous rays from his fingers. Purportedly his entire body glowed for a time just prior to his death.
Mary Jones, a Welsh preacher circa 1905, was known to have strange lights, balls of fire, and electric triangles appear around her when she preached.
It is easy to begin speculation regarding the origin of the ideas of halos and auras with things like this in history.
For a bit more reading try these: