Scott Vaughn is an intuitive healer, who specializes in helping others see through old belief systems that no longer serve them and empowering them to take charge of their own lives through recognition of their spiritual gifts.
Scott shares a supernatural event from his family history — the story of his great- great- grandfather Parks, a preacher who floated to the ceiling of his church and stayed there.
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MENTIONED ON THE SHOW
DUNE by Frank Herbert
LITANY AGAINST FEAR
I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.
Bene Gesserit "Litany Against Fear" from Frank Herbert's Dune Book Series © 1965 and 1984 Frank Herbert Published by Putnam Pub Group ISBN: 0399128964
GUEST LINKS - SCOTT VAUGHN
The Grandpa Story Scott's original post about the levitating preacher
HOST LINKS - SLADE ROBERSON
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I'm Scott Vaughn. You got that part right, I know that.
I'm a professional intuitive in Johnson City, Tennessee. I do a lot of work, a lot of readings.
When I first began my work, I was doing a lot of healing work. I'm sort of a, was a reiki practitioner who sort of woke up one day, and, not that all reiki practitioners need to wake up, that isn't what I'm trying to imply. I was going along about my married life and, this stuff has always been in the background for me. I was always, probably a little bit more claircognizant I would say, if I was putting a term on it, than I could have recognized at the time.
I always seemed to know some things that I was not supposed to know and it seemed to make people more uncomfortable, now that I think about it, than I was able to access at the time.
But somewhere around 2012, I think it's in the summer that I actually met you on the street side in Chattanooga, I ended up having a health issue and turns out I had had some elevated liver enzymes. I went to the doctor about it. That this is a theme. I've had elevated liver enzymes for a long time.
So I went to the doctor and she said, We're gonna send you and get you an ultrasound of this liver. So they did an ultrasound of my liver. She said, We didn't find anything. I'm going to send you to a gastroenterologist. And of course, I was a really great hypochondriac in those days so that just absolutely fed those wonderful impulses and urges that I had going on at the time.
So she sent me to a gastroenterologist and he said, We're going to do a CAT Scan of your liver. This was around, I think, maybe Memorial Day of 2012. That's 6 years ago now. Hard to believe.
But they call me back, the nurse, she says, Hello, we have found something on your liver and we're definitely going to need to take a look at it. We're going to have to schedule you in for an MRI.
And as you know, medical tests always... you don't get them the next day. It was like, 5 weeks out. So of course I was scared shitless.
What I had to do at that point, I was working a fairly rigorous spiritual program, and I had to really put myself back into that, because I had, not really thrown that out. I just wasn't as rigorous in my practice as I had wanted to be.
And as I began to do that, I don't know what happened. I began to wake up, and went to the local metaphysical shop, which was not really a place that I hung out, to be honest with you, at that point, and had a chakra alignment.
I don't exactly know what happened there but I began to... He put some sto... This is how I would have described it then. He put these rocks on me and he left the room. And then I started seeing all these dead people. So that's how I talked about it then, so that's how I'll talk about it now.
I started hearing, I mostly hear things, rather than see things, although I do see things in my mind's eye as well, but my mind's ear is, I think, more developed. I began to hear these conversations with people who had passed and favorite aunts were coming by, my grandfather was coming by, my father was, had not passed yet but he came by later. We can talk about that later.
And after that, just began to start having what I call.. just sort of mind-blowing awarenesses.
Began realizing that I needed to follow a slightly different path for my life, and I'd been working, and did until fairly recently, in higher education, in academic advising and higher education administration. I was at the point in my life where I was really ready to go very heavy into that conference-going world and writing articles and all that stuff that people do in the academic world.
It sort of just really called all that into question for me and... This is not what I'm supposed to do. I'm supposed to do something else.
So... took a few classes here and there. I enrolled in a ministerial program that was being offered out of our local metaphysical shop that's named Atlantis here in Johnson City, and the teacher, my teacher, who was offering it, just... I happened to be in there one day, probably buying a stone because I was getting an interest in crystals and things like that.
And she said, Hey, I'm teaching this class. I don't know if you might be interested in it.
And for some reason, which was very seemingly out of character for me, I said, Yeah, I'm interested in doing this!
It was the Alliance of Divine Love, it's a metaphysical, ordinational ('ordinational' is not a word), but it's a metaphysical sect, it's not really a sect either, but it's a metaphysical type of ordination, with 3-years long course, and that was a really good experience for me.
And the only reason that I really want to mention that is if you had, if she had come to me a year before, maybe 2 years before: 1. I never would have encountered her. That's one thing. 2. I would've just been like, No! Hell no! Like, You're crazy. I don't want anything to do with... No!
It wasn't that I had anything against it from a religious standpoint. It's just that I thought, I thought people who are like who I've turned out to be were absolutely crazy.
Funny the way things shift over time for you, and...
So, went through that, and it became very apparent that I needed to... It was just time for me to start working with people and I kept hearing this strong message: You need to work with others.
And I'm like, Wow, I don't know, I'm like, Why?
I'd taken a reiki class several years before and that was a lot of fun. I did it, and work on, you know, put my hands on some people, did it for myself. Thought it was a real neat experience.
That summer I also felt the need to take that second level of reiki and... so I opened up the following year. Just started seeing folks in my house, in my living room, as a matter of fact. I put up a massage table in my living room and started working with folks.
One of my very first clients was a guy named Dennis (if you're listening Dennis, Hey!) turned out to be a very dear friend over time. I performed at his wedding last summer to his partner. I was working with Dennis and I was doing all the stuff.
And in those days, it was a very formal preparing the space and making sure everything was very quiet and very sacred and taking it with just the utmost seriousness. I had these agate wind chimes that were really pretty, but when the air conditioning would blow, it would sound, clink clink clink.
It was annoying.
I resist the word cacophonous because that's really pretentious, but they're... I had to call it out and say it was pretentious, but it was cacophonous. It was annoying.
And I remember saying, just looking up, Can't you do something about these horrible wind chimes? I can't focus on Dennis.
And I got a very, very clear message back, and I still laugh about it.
You don't need to worry about the wind chimes because you're not doing any of this anyway.
And I was like, Shit.
But that was a very strong message for me, very early in beginning to do my work.
And then, and just logically followed, I knew that I was also supposed to do readings as well but didn't know how that would work. But I knew that was coming for me. I remember one of the, the very first psychic fair I participated in, I didn't know what to call myself. I was more in the room with the healer folks, but towards the end, I was like, I'm really here to do readings.
I ended up doing a couple of readings for folks and it seemed to... I don't remember them very well, which I usually consider that a pretty good sign that something decent happened, if I'm staying out of the equation and not screwing it up with my conscious mind, and everything sort of logically followed after that.
I felt like I just needed to probably stop seeing people outside of my office or outside of my house, because I live in a condo and it was just... went and had to keep it clean all the time and I didn't like to do that, so decided it was probably a good idea to open up an office that was right over the hill from where I was living at the time, and began to do readings, mostly I used to be doing healing type work and it wasn't exactly reiki that I ultimately began to do that I am doing now.
I don't exactly know what I would call the methodology that I have but it's not a lot of hands on. It's a lot of chanting, it's a lot of frequency, and just sending energy back and forth for folks. It's a lot of Spirit Guides. It's a lot of calling in the Medicine People from other cultures, and allowing them to hold the space and allowing that work to continue. But began doing readings.
Primarily my work now consists mostly of doing readings instead of doing healing work. That's sort of not the focus as much now. It's just turned out more that I'm doing readings.
And, I was told very early on that, the people that I would end up working with were probably going to be people who were not necessarily always sold on the new age path, the whole metaphysical thing. That the person I was going to be working with, you know, anyone who seeks me out, I feel like I work with whomever I'm supposed to work with, but the majority of the people who come my way are folks who are disappointed in organized religion and in the church and things like that. But they haven't been able to find a way to replace that with anything that's meaningful.
These are folks who are sad sometimes and disillusioned about the way they've seen spiritual matters handled. And folks who really want to... They know there's something more but they may have been taught all their lives it was not okay to seek those things. Because that was not allowed. There's a strong threat of that, especially here in this culture in east Tennessee.
So that tends to be a lot of the people who come my way.
One of the things that I feel very strongly that I'm supposed to do is sort of, the Hermit card in the tarot is one that I sort of embody. Just sort of holding the light up for folks.
You know? Standing there, along the path. The nice thing about that card is, you don't know what's in front, you don't know what's behind. But there he is, holding the light. And that's sort of what I've been feeling lately, that I'm supposed to embody. Is holding the light up for people and interpreting the things that are given to me to offer to them as insights for them along their path.
You're a Lantern Bearer, Scott!
A Lantern Bearer - that's cute. I love that.
I actually have an episode about the Hermit tarot and how I re-named it the Lantern Bearer, because... yeah..
You know what? I may have stolen that. That may be where I've heard that. I may be stealing from you and I don't -
I stole it from someone else.
There was a, I don't know if there's one of those decks floating around out there where the Hermit card is actually called the Lantern Bearer, or someone somewhere has used that term, and I was like, Ooo, I like that!
I'm sure Hay House has put it out somewhere, you know?
Right. Yes. Copyright whoever said it!
But I do have an episode about it and the episode's mine.
I want to talk to the audience for just a second and let them know that, for those of you listening to this conversation, Scott is a friend of mine and he's an honorary member of the Automatic Intuition community because he was sort of teaching himself while being friends with me, but yet I still needed him to be a part of that group.
I've wanted to interview him since day one of this podcast but here's the thing with interviewing your friends. We could talk for hours about anything, and it may or may not necessarily be fun or interesting to anyone listening. So far I think you're doing pretty good, but...
So the challenge was to find the right focus topic, and with so many of the guests on the show being intuitives and healers and peers, Scott and I were kind of brainstorm texting about this for months, like, What should we do an episode about??
And then I see this post on Scott's Facebook wall titled, "Concerning The Time My Great-Great Grandfather Floated to the Ceiling of the Church—And Lingered.” I read the story and I lost my mind over it.
I told Scott “THIS” this is what I want to talk to you about. Nobody else has this story.
This was months ago.
Go ahead and say something while I clear my throat.
One of the things about the story is that, a lot of times I'll re-run myself on Facebook. You know. Nobody really notices that much about that as the person doing it. People think, Oh this is great, you just put it together now.
No, this is a re-run from last year. You liked it then too.
But I think the first time I put that out there, maybe 2009, I was in a much different head, I was in a much different heart space than I am now, okay? So there was a lot of, the original version of that, if it's still out there and I don't think I went back and edited it, really conveys a lot of the skepticism I had at the time with it.
And then the latest version comes from what I would say is a more heart-centred, really knowing, just from a much more knowing place and much more loving place and a much more... I'm very open to the possibilities of everything that could have happened when he floated to the ceiling of the church and lingered.
Okay, so... let's just... You've got to tell us this story.
Your great-great-grandfather floated to the ceiling of the church. I'm just going to let you tell us... Like I've never heard it before. Tell it to me.
Okay. Like you've never heard it before.
Because a lot of times when I'm talking about this story, I'm talking about the story itself, which is different than telling the story. It's the story about the story.
It goes that my great-great-grandfather had started out, I think, in the hills of Tennessee and then south eastern Kentucky of a town Jellico, Tennessee. That's about two hours above, maybe an hour and a half, an hour above Knoxville, if you take Interstate 70. A very remote mountain area.
If you were writing a book about Appalachia and you really wanted to find something that seemed almost cliche it was so realistic, you could find that.
And so, in the back woods, probably a Baptist minister, okay, and my understanding at the time is that he was a very straight up and down Baptist minister, very read-the-scripture, the talk-a-lot kind of guy and was making a pretty good living as preacher back in the woods.
Around the early 20th century, this wave of Pentacostalism started sweeping through the country, hitting about, in the mountains (my electricity just went out as we're talking about this - Hello, great grandpa, great great grandpa Parks).
So (electricity's back) so this wave of Pentacostalism starts sweeping through the country, probably hits the area in the early 20th century in Jellico, and... So he began to preach... I don't know how familiar you are with some parts of the Bible. Over in the book of Corinthians, it talks about the spiritual gifts of healing, of prophecy of times, of people being able to interpret speaking in other tongues and people being able to put their hands on other people and they be healed from things.
He began to preach those things and a lot of people followed him as he started a new congregation. He took his congretation with him and they moved and started something else. The people who went with him were all into it, but a lot of people in the community, it was heresy to them.
So, the story goes that three men, allegedly from the Baptist church, came in to break up the service. They had guns and they appeared in the very back. My great-great-grandfather, I'm going to start calling him Grandpa Parks, or grandpa. Grandpa Parks was up there preaching and he saw the men and he said, If you come one step closer, I pray the devil smite you.
And they walked closer.
And of course, people in the church were starting to really panic and get nervous. My great-great-grandmother, Grandma Parks is sitting there thinking, she starts to pray, and at that moment, the Spirit of God picks him up from the pulpit and he rises to the ceiling of the church, and of course, Grandma Parks is there and she's like, Oh God, he's about to be 'transa-lated', was the word I heard.
He's about to be transa-lated, just like Enoch. He's about to be transa-lated just like Enoch.
She thought he's gonna... People are like, He's gonna go through the ceiling! He's gonna go through the ceiling!
And, of course, you know, he's just as surprised as anyone, right? So the look on his face... really, you know, he's described as looking like he was scared, because, not because of the men at the back at this point, because he really just didn't know what was happening.
And moved him through the congregation, through the middle of the congregation. You know, there's the rows on either side, right through the middle of the church and put him down right in front of the three men with the guns.
Thus, after that, he was left alone.
Now the story also goes that the three men, one of them, shortly after went blind. One of them dropped his gun, took his place in the church service and shut up.
Okay? He joined up.
And the other one, at some time later, you know, who knows, history tends to conflate times, he killed himself.
Yeah, so, sort of like the three men on the cross maybe, or the Holy Trinity there, I don't know. But there were three of them.
Outside of that, this entire denomination in the mountains, they call themselves The Church of God of the Mountain Assembly in Jellico. They're still there! There are still... You can look them up on Google. The Church of God of the Mountain Assembly headquarter in Jellico.
That's one of the things that they talk about in some of their literature, was the time when Brother Parks was lifted to the ceiling of the Church, and that was a sign that they were doing the right thing. They were on the right track and that their message had weight and that began to grow and spread.
There are quite a few, interestingly enough, Jellico's in the coal mining area and as the mines dried up, people went north. So a lot of my family, as well, went to Michigan. I have quite a bit of family in Michigan, or had been in Michigan at the time. So there's quite a bit of that church now in Michigan as well, which is interesting.
And so, the amazing part of that story for me in that whole thing is it's sort of like a litmus test to my own spiritual development for me, when I look back. I was told the story as a kid. I was always fascinated by family stories. I know this is not the focus of what we're talking about, but I have equally interesting stories from... Nobody levitated, but people getting, sticking knives up their nose and dying from that, the other side of my family. I'll talk about that later.
It's my uncle, Hugh Ballard, on my dad's side, who stuck the knife up his nose and died. But, I was always fascinated somehow, I sort of became like R2D2 for my family. They implanted stories within me as a small child and it tended to speak to me in the wrong way and I just start projecting holographs of stories that make people uncomfortable, I suppose. I don't know.
I'm kind of that person in my family as well.
You're a storyteller, so...
Well, I think that... It's weird because I had aunts that would do genealogical research and stuff like that. And they would always give the stuff to me. Like, they didn't give it to their own kids.
For some reason, people identified that I was the one to give it to.
They felt like it would get told somehow, or it would be preserved, or just cared about, in a way, by me, that other people wouldn't. And it's true! I do care about all that stuff more.
But I do wonder, what would possess you to think this, like, 7 year old boy wants to know about all this stuff?
I've often wondered that, but it came to me from my mom's side of the family and my dad's side of the family. I've ended up with all of the family pictures. I've ended up with all of those things.
But my ancestors, 'ancestors' is using that term broadly, my family members who have passed, my ancestors, some of them were alive when I was alive, they figure very prominently in the work that I do too. So that's another matter entirely that we can talk about in a minute.
Here's something I want to ask you about, because...
And I have to say, all the months that we tried to think of a reason for you to come on the show, and then all the months since we decided what the reason was, interestingly, two days ago in real time, I interviewed Ian Allen, who is a friend of yours, who also lives in Johnson City, and part of our conversation was about how supernatural, mystical, what we consider new age topics were viewed through the filter of Christianity.
So you have some crazy, I mean, full-blown witchcraft going on, but it was all in the name of Jesus, you know what I mean?
So I was wondering what your perspective is on that sort of weird mishmash of Christianity and the supernatural stuff which is not traditionally thought of as everyday Christian.
Right, you know, I've been thinking that you were going to ask that question. I've not had an answer for it all week. Because I've had that in mind as well and I think that I was raised in a very traditional Christian family environment, and those kinds of things, though it's very conservative religion, a very evangelical religion, generally speaking, the belief was, a lot of those things that happened in, you know, the early church, we didn't have access to them in the current church.
So the idea that, Can people be healed? Yes they can but God uses doctors. That's why God created doctors. Whatever, right?
But... I've had to look further back into my family to be able to find some of those things, and that's in my Pentecostal relatives, right? Some of my mom's family, they still follow that path, and a lot of my family doesn't.
But they're always the ones at the family gatherings I'm gravitating towards, because they're talking about prayer and things that have happened as a result of prayer. They're talking about warts falling off people. They're talking about somebody who had cancer who doesn't have cancer now. Somebody who was a drug addict one day and suddenly had an experience and they've not used drugs in 25 years.
Those kinds of things. All kinds of ways of having miracles.
And I don't really have an answer to your question. I have just a lot of experiences, a lot of things I believe have happened but I don't really know why that is.
So thank you for asking - it's a great question!
Do you believe in miracles?
Yeah, of course!
Now, I used to - For many years, I considered myself an atheist, okay? And so I didn't believe in anything. And it took a lot of work for me to not believe in anything, which tells me I wasn't a very good atheist.
The kind of work that I'm doing now certainly was off the table because it was deeply buried. And, I think, you've heard that there are no atheists on the front lines of battle. I don't know. No atheist in the foxhole?
I don't know about that, but I do know that some things that happened to me in my life forced me to really reconsider there was something out there that was bigger than me, and that wasn't me. Otherwise I would really be dead or worse... So if you can think of yourself being dead or worse, the worse part means that you're probably not an atheist. Because you tend to believe there is something going on out there that doesn't line up with your belief system, being an atheist, or at least as I understood it.
For many years, I've used, I was an alcoholic. I'm a recovering alcoholic now, drug addict, those things. It's been many years since... I've been clean and sober for many years.
Was that the result of anything spiritual? Or was it more of... from that atheist time period?
It was probably from all that. I was a very bitter guy, a lot of bitterness against, and rebellion against religion, and those kinds of things, and with the family history, I suppose, that's always a part of it.
Just poured alcohol onto it and pills and just went through a period of my life where I really wasn't there for it.
As I got sober, that's sort of the beginning of my re-awakening.
I believe we're all born awakened, right? Then I think, our families, our society, etc., I think we just get closed up and closed up. And in the end, we buy into that belief that we're closed up so much and we just continue to add to it, and alcohol was my way of adding to it, and not being here for my life.
As I began to show up more for my life, I began to see, at least for me, there's a lot more than what I'm willing to admit is out there and in here, right? There a lot more and I don't have to be shut off from it.
As I began to realize that I'm not shut off from it, I started awakening.
I won't say that I'm awakenED. I will say that I'm awakenING, if that makes any sense.
I've been sort of thinking that some of these things might come up over the course of us talking today, and in some ways, I think I am baffled that I'm doing this and I'm grateful that I am doing this, but...
If you had met me 10 years ago, and you had told me... If I had come to you for a session 10 years ago, of course I wouldn't have come to you for a session 10 years ago because I wouldn't have dared to 10 years ago, based on where I was, and you had told me that I was going to be doing this kind of work and all of that, I would have laughed.
I would have thought, Boy, he has confirmed that he is just as crazy. I went in here and paid him money, you know, that kind of thing.
I probably would have told you.
Yeah, I know. And I would have been like, You're crazy!
I would be that person people always tell me about. I hear this all the time, 'A psychic told me once' and I'm always in the chain of... I'm never the first one to tell them, which is probably cool.
I'd rather be at the end of that line of...
Just to go back to this miracle for a second, with your great-great-grandfather...
You know what, if it's okay with you, I'll post a transcript of your Facebook post so everybody can kind of read some of that detail, because it's different every time you tell it, right? There's a different perspective.
Which tells me it was different every time it was told to me so who knows exactly. There have also been members of my family who've worked really hard at debunking the story too. We'll talk about that in a minute if you like, but yeah...
Well tell me, did you ever speak to anyone who actually witnessed this?
Okay. The first family reunion, and it's interesting that all this is coming up, because in two weeks, I will be at the site of all this again. Okay? In two weeks, my family is having a reunion in Jellico.
Because I'm the person who knows the stories, and knows where all the people are buried. I'm probably the last person alive, at least in this branch of my family who could take you to the graves of everyone who has come before us.
Anyway, I don't know where I was going with that, but the first thing at every reunion, I take my tape player and I, because when I was a kid, my parents for my 5th birthday, my parents bought me a tape recorder, okay?
So I was always just recording things and I knew that some of my older family members were going to be there, and I knew I wanted to get some things on tape. I also knew that my grandmother was toward the younger end of the family. So my grandmother, and even her mother who passed away, who died really young, she probably wasn't there for what happened either. But I was there.
My grandmother's best friend, Helen Seal, who she grew up with, came down from Michigan to be part of the reunion because: 1. She and my grandmother were like sisters and, 2. The coal-mining camp where everybody was originated there in Tennessee and Kentucky. Everybody was very much like family so Helen came down.
Helen was still part of, she's passed now, but she was part of the Church of God of the Mountain Assembly in Michigan. So she still attended the church but in Michigan. You know I said a lot of people went to Michigan to work in the automobile factories when the coal mines dried up.
So Helen was also just a great storyteller. She had long grey hair that she wrapped up in a bun. She was just a spitfire of a woman so I knew I wanted to talk to her about it.
And I wish I could find the tape. It's going to be that mythical tape that's lost, that I can't find now. Sort of like Nixon's tape that's missing from Watergate.
Yeah, but she's telling me, and it starts out, she says, 'I know you want to talk about the time Brother Parks was lifted to the ceiling church, and many years ago, I asked Sister Parks what she thought about it.'
So she goes into this story, okay, and she wasn't there, but she was getting it, she was telling me her version of Sister, of my great-great-grandmother telling her the story. Okay?
Then Helen's husband, Oble, he, I don't know how he knew this, because he didn't live there, but he said that there was an old lady living in the community, Granny Mobely was her name, Granny Mobely (sounds like a Lee Smith novel)...
Granny Mobely, who was there at the time, right, and I said, Where does she live?
And he said, Well I don't know.
It's , I don't know, or I didn't know to just go down to the grocery store and ask people where Granny Mobely lived, but I never investigated that any further. I was into college and changing schools and all of that. So I never got any first hand account.
I do know that the church has some official records and there have been two books that they have put out, two little books, where they tell the story.
Also, he kept a journal as well that one of his other descendants has. I was thinking, How many descendants must he have? My great-great-grandparents had like, 8 children. And so, if you think about probably... There are probably thousands of people now who are descended from them, living today.
But one of my cousins' distant relatives, probably what I would call a 5th cousin, in Michigan, who's the pastor of one of the churches there, oddly enough, has his journal, where he wrote some things down.
I've never been able to get ahold of that. I've wanted it. I've sent requests. I've asked for copies of it. I've tried to communicate with people about it and that's never been... No one's ever been able... No one's ever been willing to communicate with me about that, which just adds to the mystery and tells me that one day I will see it. You know how that goes.
He used to prophesize well too, about great birds with people in them flying through the air. That one day, people would be, one day, this is Oble Seal told me this, that one day he was out preaching, he said, One day, there'll be people on the moon.
And this was in the 30s, right? And I don't know what we were talking about in the 30s. I don't know about... I mean, I'm sure there were, certainly there were aircrafts in the 30s. I don't know how many he would have had access to, but there certainly had not been astronauts in the 30s yet.
We had Jules Verne and we had, I don't remember if that... What was it that Hans Fritz movie, Metropolis, or... There's some really, really old creepy black-and-white movie I think that might portray people travelling on rockets to the moon, right?
Yeah, so maybe that's... I don't... Who knows if he had access to seeing those...
Umhmm... Oh yeah!
You know, probably not.
So I don't know. And I wish that I could find that tape. I know it was in the attic where I used to live, and then I've moved since then. I don't know where that box of tapes went. You know how that kind of thing goes.
It's a great set up for a novel.
Yeah, I know. It is!
Someone finds the box of tapes in the attic and then, you know.
Of course, in the story, you're both your 40-year old self and your 95-year old self so we can switch back and forth between time periods. I can see the whole thing right now.
Yeah, that's very good. Thank you very much! That's good inspiration for that.
Reverend Parks also is part of my work that I do here today too. He's one of what I call my 'assistants' and my 'guides'.
So he's like an ancestor guide?
He's an ancestor guide and when I'm working with someone specifically in a healing type session, he very strongly appears.
A lot of really tuned-in people say, Who is the bearded man here who is not you?
That's Grandpa. Pay him no mind.
He's very much who I call in to help when, you know, need a space cleaned out, he's very helpful with those kinds of things. He's very good at removing what I call, reptilian type energies from folks as well.
You know, I have to say, it just occurred to me as I was asking you that question about the whole connection with Christianity versus this kind of supernatural stuff, one of the things that became really apparent to me, because I always thought of myself as very much sort of against fundamentalism, still do...
Very anti-Christian, all that kind of stuff.
But one of the things that I have observed, kind of begrudgingly in the beginning, was that the people who are more open to talking about mysticism are by nature people of faith.
And so, if you go to an older generation of people and you want to talk about supernatural stuff, there's a lot more little old church ladies that want to talk about spirits and healing and communication from the dead and all that kind of stuff, and are a lot more open to it than, certainly than an atheist is going to be, or an intellectual from our generation is going to shut that down much more quickly too.
And so I learned very quickly to kind of have this universal translator running in my mind and to realize that that was the language they were given to speak with, you know, was the language of the Bible in the culture that they grew up in and so, that's what they had to work with.
But some of the things that they will tell you and some of the things that they will describe are just straight up like, Well this is total paranormal investigation!
This is straight up like off Sylvia Browne.
So it's made me a little bit more open-minded in myself. I have had to be more open-minded about the fact that when you strip away the vocabulary and you strip away whatever theology's comfortable and whatever symbolism is used, in both camps, or in any camp and all the camps, you'll find that there are people who are extremely plugged in and sensitive and aware and awakening and all that kind of stuff.
And then you will find people who are going through the motions and claiming to get it when they don't and then you have people who are just completely tuned out.
But that idea of who that someone is who is plugged in transcends everything else. And so when I recognize another person who's 'plugged-in', I don't care. All that other stuff is transparent. You see through it.
And so I had these experiences where I have talked to these little old ladies who use the Jesus vocabulary through the whole thing, but meanwhile, they're the most likely to get what it is that I do and to be accepting of it.
I had an aunt who was, she always used to like to renounce the spirit of fear. That was one of her big things that she liked to do.
Ooo I like that.
Renounce the spirit of fear, you know.
Here, 25 years later, I start into A Course in Miracles and talking about love and fear and all of those things, and I'm like, Good grief Rita, you were onto it all along.
It reminds me of the Bene Gesserit Litany against fear from doom. Do you know it?
No, I don't.
Okay. I'll put it in the show notes. Fear is the mind killer.
Anyway. It's a little litany that the nun-like witch organization in that world.. It's a chant that they do when facing fear. It's a way of, kind of like...
...allowing the fear to pass over and through you.
I can't recite it off the top of my head right now but I'll put it in the show notes for your sake if no one else's.
For my ADD's sake, I'm trying to sit here not get on my phone and look it up while we're talking.
I know! Don't do that in the middle of an interview!
Yeah, I'm not. I'm definitely not doing that.
I'm thinking, he'd never know. This is audio, but you'd know, because you're you!
The litany against fear.
It's really good. It's up there with the Serendipity prayer, and, you know, it's one of those tools for me. It's a mantra for sure.
So I gotta ask you this.
Given your perspective and where you are in everything, I see you as someone who is kind of an archivist in a way, of all this old knowledge and old wisdom. You've got pieces of it, more so than others might.
And so, as you think about how you are breaking that all down, sort of processing it and then putting it back together and give it new life and new form, what do you most hope to contribute to the conversation about spirituality?
You know, it's to really... There's so many trappings that folks put on it. And just let go. That's one thing that I'm always telling folks.
Just let go and stop trying to control absolutely everything. Just allow. Seek the truth for yourself and allow it to come.
You can study whatever you want to study, but be open to the sources that the truth might come to you.
Be open to what speak to you. Be open to what doesn't speak to you. Sometimes what doesn't speak to you speaks to you more than... because it doesn't speak to you, if that makes sense.
In the 12-steps circles, people talk about 'let go and let God', you know, let go and let Spirit do Spirit's work, and realizing that a lot of that happens in a very subtle way in that it often times doesn't happen very instantly.
It's a process and also that just because we're spiritual, just because we studied the Law of Attraction, which is great, you know, it's fine. It's not the only law there is though.
Just because we've read this and watched the latest YouTube video, just because we've done this or this or this, it doesn't absolve us from doing the work on ourselves. And from taking, you know, sometimes I tell the folks that I'm working with, if nothing else, I'm gonna be able to, hopefully, with some assistance here, provide you at least some kind of mirror so that you can see yourself honestly, and see your path in a way that you've not seen it before.
At least as honest as I can convey it to you, as honest as you're able to see it, but to look very closely inside for the answers and not externally. Because the answers for me are not the answers for you, and there's certainly some universal truths, but the path for everybody is slightly different. And each person has his or her own expression.
And I just feel like I'm babbling, Slade. I love that question.
It's meant to be a stumper but it's also meant to be a prompt to...
Well, I used to ask people what really bugs the shit out of them in all this crap. And then I realized, Heather O'Shea I think was the person who was like, 'I'm going to reframe that, make it more positive'.
And I was like, 'Okay, that's a good idea'.
And so, going forward, I try to re-frame that as a more positive thing.
One thing I would say is, this is not a cake mix. Okay? This is not... You realize there are certain... We don't have as much control over things in our world as we do over baking a cake.
It's a good analogy, but again, it's not the best analogy. Okay?
I do believe that the new thought community talks about planting seeds and watering seeds and all that, but the idea is that you've got to plant the appropriate seeds for the thing that you want. Right?
And you have to do it. You have to tend it.
YOU have to tend your garden.
Remember, from Candide, and he goes through all that and Candide at the end: All of this is well and good. All of this is well and good. I've encountered the woman who had her ass eaten because of steak or something, but I still had to cultivate my own garden.
You know? I still had to cultivate my own garden.
And Pangloss is saying, 'All is well and good in this best of all possible worlds.'
And Candide's saying, 'Yes, thank you, but I still have to cultivate my own garden', and that is me planting the appropriate seeds and doing the literal work of putting the thing together. Keep seeing things. If you can think it, you can be it. If you can dream it, you can be it.
On one level, that's certainly true. You know? I know that there's a lot of hope for people in that as well. But if it were that simple, we wouldn't have any problems. If it were that simple...
I hear a lot of talk about... Everything's all the Law of Attraction this, and the Law of Attraction that, and that is certainly all well and good and there's so much truth there, right? But it's not simply just thinking happy thoughts all the time and everything will be okay.
It's about embodying a new way to be, and truly, not just sprouting affirmations (hehe, 'sprouting'), not just spouting affirmations at yourself. Sprouting - I'm using that seed metaphor.
Right. Taking it all the way through
Yeah, taking it all the way through. Thank you!
It's... You can't just say, 'I am at peace with myself' and 'today's going to be better' and everything just work out. You have to go a little bit deeper than that.
You have to do what affirmations really do. You have to... The nice thing that I love, because I deal with a lot of affirmations with folks that I work with is to say, 'Use this as an affirmation.' And 'You'll know it's working if, after you've done this for a couple of days, you feel worse.'
Because that means it's lodged itself in those deep recesses of the things that you don't want to have to deal with and it's bringing it all to the surface. It's going in there and it's sort of destroying the energy of the thing you no longer want, and it's just all bubbling up like stomach acid, right?
In that way, you know you're on the right track.
There's always that thing is, I want to feel better and I want to feel better NOW.
And I'm always like, we can all feel better, but we still have to do something. You know? We still have to take a look at our ourselves.
Well, you know, and you don't just do it once either. I think the... If I was answering your question with the way that you're answering it, I would say that, the thing that really kicks you in the gut when you realize that you have to get up and re-do it every day.
You have to start over and over and over again and every day.
I mean, some things might carry you through longer arcs of time, but really, it's not A decision. It's thousands of decisions. It's thousands of times making the same decision over and over again.
It's a whole spiritual practice. It's not just a set of isolated things. It's a whole spiritual practice, you know? Like yoga is a spiritual practice. It's a whole thing. It's not just going to a class now and then. Although I love going to yoga classes, but it's a whole spiritual practice that I have to embody.
And I have to figure out a new way to BE, not just a new way to think, not just a new way to act, but a whole new way to BE if I want some results in that way.
But certainly I know inside of me, given, left to my own devices, I'll always usually pick the easy way out.
Scott, it's so good to capture one or maybe a handful of your stories. I know that we still have so many others that we could do, but I'm glad that we finally got one in the can.
I really want to appreciate you for coming on and telling your story.
Tell everyone where they can go find you online.
Yeah! It's sort of the entrepreneur phase of my life right now but ScottDouglasVaughn.com is the website for my spiritual work.
Also I'm a photographer! I take pictures of abandoned buildings and things like that. And all of this grew out of that same summer, summer of 2012 that I was talking about a little bit earlier. That's ScottVaughnphotography.com
My website, ScottDouglasVaughn.com is pretty good insight into what I'm doing right now.