Doppelgangers – a quick peek by Amanda


When asked recently what really scares me, I mean terrifies me, the only thing that immediately came to mind is Doppelgängers. “Harbingers of Death” The sheer thought of it chills me to the bone.

As a paranormal enthusiast and avid supernatural researcher I can say truly I have never touched upon the topic of doppelgängers. Coincidence or Fear? More than likely a little from A and a whole pile of B. I have studied demonology, witch hunts, werewolves, ancient charms, myths and curses,  modern tales and practices of zombification. I have travelled up and down the West Coast and across our wild country in search of tales and evidence of phantoms, poltergeist & possessions. I have spent more than a penny in dark alleys & swamped bathrooms seeking all things horrifyingly creepy and dedicated more than my life on the search for the unknown but never have I touched the subject of doppelgängers.

In German doppelgängers is a Double-goer and in English doppelgänger translates to “double of someone”, so I ask you; what is it really? Simply a twin or mirror image of us that lives far away never to been seen with our own eyes or is there more to it? History leads us to believe more..

Guy de Maupassant, a 19th century writer most commonly known by his works “Boule de Suif” and “Le Horla” was plagued later in life by a belief of seeing his own doppelgänger and being haunted to the end of his life,  even writing about this in his short story “Lui”. It would be simple to end this example here and say no more to this strange tail but the skeptic in me dives further. Obsessed with self-preservation, Guys existence became a tragic tale until the end of his life. Constant fear and paranoia that plagued the writer eventually drove him mad; he was committed to an asylum after trying to commit suicide by slitting his own throat. Was this all on account of seeing his doppelgängers or does another revelation of his contraction of syphilis earlier in life explain all?

Abraham Lincoln was noted as believing he not only had a visit from his doppelgängers but also had dreams that foretold his death.

Percy Bysshe Shelley and even Queen Elizabeth both reported seeing their doppelgängers shortly before their deaths, Percy with the uncanny ability to make mention of details of his death that came true.

I have often wondered if our own fears within society have caused these stories to drop off the radar. Is it too “nuts” to report a sighting of our own ghostly apparitions? Are we as a society too scared to admit that there may be more involved when encountering any form of spirit? I have been told that spirit will come to us in forms we recognize as to not startle us or scare us but rather to reassure us. I am sorry but seeing an apparition of myself is top shelf startling and would scare me to pieces… so that theory is out the window. For me that is.

Interestingly enough, we do share stories of seeing our loved ones. I was recently involved in a delightfully in-depth conversation of the belief of the supernatural when this topic came up and I heard one of the most moving stories of a loved one coming and visiting their Grandmother at the exact time of death. A visit that became reassuring and reaffirming at the same time. This was a private and personal story so details will not be shared but it does lead me to sharing other examples.

John Donne: The 16th century poet while overseas and away from his expecting wife had a vision of her holding a newborn baby, this apparition was a portent of great sadness. Donne months later learnt his wife had given birth to a stillborn at the exact time of this vision.

Another notable tale took place in the home of Vice-Admiral Sir George Tryon. While a dinner party was being hosted in his Eaton Square home in London the he walked through the drawing-room and looked straight ahead, not responding to any greetings by guests to his home. His wife was the most shocked as he was supposed to be on a ship, in the Mediterranean Squadron, maneuvering off the coast of Syria. It was reported that night his ship the HMS Victoria had gone down with him on board after a collision with the HMS Camperdown.

I got the heebie-geebies just writing that part…

I often wonder why most of these accounts happen in the ”olden days”.  Is it a belief structure that we have grown out of?  Or are we just simply a little bit too weary to admit to such happenings- faced with the fear of being called crazy or flaky.   In fact if we were a bit more accepting of all belief systems and traditions it would be much easier to answer, document and study these inquiries, possibly even squashing all fear.

Look how far we have come with after death, near death and shared death experiences.  All coined terms for the new days we live. Is there a possibility that these scientific terms and studies can tie into the theories of doppelgängers?    Wormholes, Dimensions, Shadow People and Doppelgängers ~  Lets open this dialogue.

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