Thursday, October 13, 2011

Our visit to Salem Massachusetts

Natalie & I just got back from Salem, Massachusetts. While there we took in about everything they offered to us about how and why the witch trials happened. We went to the witch museum, the jail/dungeon, the cemetery, and story tellers who all have a different take on the witch trials. Some say it was a way to make profit off of the victims by acquiring their land and property, while others say it was a way to get rid of the other rival churches in town who were not puritan in their teaching. The main story told over and over was that it was all because of a couple of girls who were bored and enjoyed stories from their slave cook about voodoo, tea leaf reading and more. The girls started role playing that people put spells on them and that they were attacking them in their dreams and more. The whole town got caught up in the hoopla and it has been a black mark on the history of Salem. The whole thing was so crazy that people were being accused of being a witch without any evidence or apparent reason and they were brought to court and put on trial. The reasons for accusing someone of being a witch could be a birthmark, scratch or flea bite (which would have been known in those days as being proof of a Devil’s Mark), someone accusing you of sending them into fits, and/or possessing ointments, cruds dolls, or other tools of the trade. The main consensus of how everything was put to a halt was that the girls were invited to another town to see if they could spot any witches there. The girls pointed out the mayor’s wife and said she had an evil spirit surrounding her, the mayor then put his foot down. He demanded real evidence before accusing someone of being a witch. This is still demanded in today's courts.

Lesson learned: It is not for us to judge anyone and you need to learn from the past or you’re doomed to repeat it...

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Wes Iseli's Magic in Salem Cemetery

This video was filmed in Salem's oldest cemetery. There are twenty benches in the memorial, one for each of the victims actively put to death (not counting those who died in prison).

In this video a nail turns over in my hand again and again as if being moved by a ghost. Was it a ghost? Was I using witchcraft? Was it just a cool trick? You be the judge...