Shot or Not? Seizures, Brain Activity, and Paranormal Experiences
I recently watched a 2013 YouTube episode of the Dr. Oz Show featuring Theresa Caputo, TV celebrity and infamous “Long Island Psychic Medium.” Dr. Oz invited psychiatrist and brain imaging expert Dr. Daniel Amen to perform a SPECT (Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography-which reveals electrical activity in the brain) scan on Caputo while she was conducting psychic readings with the audience.
Caputo explained to Dr. Oz, “My brain doesn’t work like everyone else’s. I always said since I was a young child, Mom, I don’t feel right. I don’t feel like I belong. I feel [my brain is] different.” Amen administered the scan to determine whether or not Caputo demonstrated unusual brain activity. Indeed, the results were so extraordinary that Dr. Oz, previously a skeptic of the connection between unusual brain activity and psychic phenomena, became a “100% believer.”
During the episode, Oz quoted the late psychologist and neuroscientist, Michael Persinger:
Time travel, re-experiencing past events (past-lives), or pre-experiencing future events (precognition) have been associated with frontal and temporal lobe changes. Mystical or paranormal experiences are associated with transient electrical activity within the temporal lobes of the human brain. Right temporal lobe activity changes when experiencing a sensed presence (spirit, ghost, etc.).
This show really got me thinking. Like Caputo, I have always felt my brain is “electrically wired differently” from others. Secondly, my mother insists that my early childhood DPT vaccine did WEIRD AND DAMAGING, EPILECTIC SEIZURE-LIKE THINGS to my brain! DPT was (and note the word ‘was’) a series of three separate vaccines, Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis, administered in one injection. DPT was replaced in 1991 with a safer version, known today as DTAP.
Side effects of DPT were usually mild. However, the most rare and unusual aftereffects, occurring in only one in 14,000 children, were absence seizures (previously referred to as petit-mal seizures). Absence seizures are a form of temporal lobe epilepsy, lasting a few seconds to two minutes.
As a person who constantly puzzles the medical community with my weird and unusual symptoms, is it any surprise that I was diagnosed as that rare two year old -the one in 14,000? My “seizures” began shortly after my inoculation. As a toddler, I talked non-stop. Yet, during an absence seizure, I would suddenly “blank-out,” staring into space without blinking-becoming non-responsive and completely unaware of my environment. Afterwards, I was back to my old chatter-box self. Yet, even then, at some level, I intuited that my so called “seizures” were anything but.
Let’s reconsider Caputo’s scan, and the onset of her psychic abilities. Her SPECT revealed abnormal, yet psychic-based brain activity. Like me, she became aware of her abilities in very early childhood. Likewise, scans reveal that absence seizures also cause abnormal, non-pathological and intense electrical brain activity. My first psychic/paranormal experience occurred when I was two, shortly, if not immediately after my DPT vaccine. Liluye entered my life.
Liluye (a Miwok Tribe name meaning “Singing chicken hawk that soars), was a striking Native American woman-ageless and wise. I nicknamed her “Luli”, as Liluye was a two year old tongue-twister. Luli and I had intense telepathic conversations regarding the cosmos, the afterlife, consciousness, and physics. During our conversations, I eagerly absorbed and fully comprehended the profound concepts we discussed. Luli was not an “imaginary friend.” She was realer-than-real, my spirit guide.
The unfathomable knowledge she imparted forever changed me. Luli was my first, yet, far from my last extraordinary experience. Although I was two, I began to notice a ‘shift’ in my conscious awareness. My psychic abilities grew. I just “knew things,” yet could not explain how I did. I experienced frequent paranormal experiences. This was overwhelming at times, yet was my new “normal.”
Research suggests that atypical electrical brain surges are common during numerous psychic or paranormal experiences, including, but not limited to, out-of-body experiences, near-death and mystical experiences, past-life memories, psi phenomena, and visitations from unearthly beings/spirit guides.
Do I believe the DPT vaccine caused my unusual brain activity and subsequent extraordinary experiences? I don’t think so. Yet, I cannot scientifically disprove this either. Quite possibly I was born with latent paranormal abilities, which were triggered by the vaccine. Conceivably, my ‘absence seizures’ occurred while I momentarily left conscious awareness, connecting to a higher reality. Feasibly, an out-of-body experience explains my ‘blanking out’ and ‘staring episodes.’
Thus, again, I pose my original question, “Shot (vaccine), or Not?”