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Are zombies real or just something Hollywood is into nowadays? If you’ve ever seen the movie The Serpent and the Rainbow, you know the question is legitimate. That movie was based on a book by Wade Davis, who earned his PhD in part on the basis of his research into “zombification” in Haiti. Davis and others theorize that zombies are real, and that they are the result of specific drugs given to individuals against their will that produce zombie-like states and behavior. The modern drug Flakka is a current, frightening example. Other researchers disagree, noting that zombie lore is very old and encompasses notions that sound a lot like demonization and possession. This episode of PEERANORMAL explores the topic just in time for Halloween.


Ackermann, Hans-W & Gauthier, Jeanine, “The Ways and Nature of the Zombi,” The Journal of American Folklore 104:414 (1991): 466-494

Murtaugh, Constructing the Haitian Zombie: An Anthropological Study Beyond Madness

William Booth, Voodoo Science,” Science new series, 240:4850 (April 15, 1988): 274-277

Neurophilosophy (Science Blogs), “The ethnobiology of voodoo zombification,” Sept 13, 2007

Wade Davis, Zombification,” Science new series, 240: 4860 (June 1988): 1715-1716

Natalina, Indonesian Zombie Photo: Real, Fake, or Misunderstood?” Extraordinary Intelligence blog, Sept 20, 2010

YouTube: Zombie Drug BRAZIL ‘Cloud Nine (2017)

Back in 2012 the world heard that Bigfoot DNA had been isolated and genetically tested under controlled laboratory conditions. Those involved claimed that the testing had proven the existence of Bigfoot (aka, Sasquatch), and that the creature was a hybrid between modern homo sapiens and an unknown primate species.In a short time, the story unraveled and the research was scrutinized by experts revealing a number of flaws. But this was not the only attempt at producing genetic evidence for Bigfoot. There were earlier and subsequent tests. Is there genuine evidence for Bigfoot DNA?

Graphic from joshuastevens.net

Jack Brewer is the force behind the excellent blog, The UFO Trail. Since 2009 Jack has devoted considerable time to researching the connections between elements of the alien abduction narrative, hypnosis techniques used to “recover” memories of the alleged abduction experience, and research programs and personnel associated with documented government mind control programs such as MK-ULTRA. These connections are well documented in his book The Grays Have Been Framed: Exploitation in the UFO Community. Jack shares elements of his research in this interview.

Is Rh-Negative Blood Evidence of Alien / Nephilim Hybridization?

The idea that people with Rh-Negative blood indicates alien or nephilim ancestry is on the rise in fringe internet communities and websites. In this episode our panel is joined by someone with medical training (MD) who is familiar with blood typing and the genetics behind Rh-negative blood. The episode discusses the nature of Rh-negative blood, its genetic explanation, and speculations about other traits associated with Rh-negative blood.

Sources for this episode 

Ellen K. Tarr, “Everything you know about being Rh-negative is wrong,” paper delivered at the 2016 CSICON in Las Vegas, NV

  • See this link for the published version

Gurudev, “Why Rh Negative is not Blood of Gods or of Alien Origin

Neil D. Avent and Marion E. Reid, “The Rh Blood Group System: A Review,” BLOOD 95:2 (January 15, 2000): 375-387; published by the American Society of Hematology at Penn State

Isabelle Mouro, Yves Colin, Baya Chérif-Zahar, Jean-Pierre Cartron & Caroline Le Van Kim, “Genetic Basis of RhD Positive and RhD-Negative Blood Group Polymorphism as Determined by Southern Analysis,”  BLOOD 78:10 (November 15, 1991): 2747-2752; published by the American Society of Hematology at Penn State

  • “Southern Analysis” = The “Southern blot” method of DNA analysis.

Other links for the show:




There have been dozens of documented cases where the recipient of a transplant, often involving the heart, apparently take on the personalities of the organ donor. Recipients also report memories of the donor, and memories that belong to the donor, despite never having met the donor. These cases range from very young children to adults. How can memories and behaviors be transmitted from one person to the next when brain and neural tissue is not involved? Does this phenomenon relate to the question of consciousness?

Source articles for the episode:

B. Bunzel, B. Schmidl-Mohl, A. Grundböck and G. Wollenek, “Does Changing the Heart Mean Changing Personality? A Retrospective Inquiry on 47 Heart Transplant Patients?” Quality of Life Research, vol 1, no 4 (1992): 251-256

Paul Pearsall, Gary E. R. Schwartz, Linda G. S. Russek, “CHANGES IN HEART TRANSPLANT RECIPIENTS THAT PARALLEL THE PERSONALITIES OF THEIR DONORS,” Integrative Medicine vol 2, nos. 2-3 (1999): 67-52; republished in the Journal of Near Deaf Studies vol 20, no 3 (2002): 191-206. HTML version

Thomas Verny, “What Cells Remember: Toward a Unified Field Theory of Memory,” Journal of Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology and Health, vol 29, no 1 (Fall 2014): 16-29

This episode focuses on entheogens—psychedelic drugs that are known to cause “mystical states” of consciousness. Our hosts discuss Rick Strassman’s work on DMT, but that is merely a subset of entheogen study. Current research in the fields of brain science, psychology, and religion are struggling to explain how entheogens and the experiences they cause should be understood. The dilemma of consciousness, more popularly known as the mind-body problem, is at the heart of the struggle. Do entheogens simply affect part of the brain and its chemistry triggering new states of consciousness from inside your head? Or do these drugs separate consciousness from the organ of the body we call the brain, verifying that consciousness is distinct from the brain? Are God and other supernal beings experienced by people under the effect of entheogens just a product of the brain, or are they entities to be experienced by unhindered consciousness?


Peter Bebergal, “Mystics Under the Microscope,” Search Magazine (January-February 2009): 35-39

Ron Cole-Turner, “Entheogens, Mysticism, and Neuroscience,” Zygon, vol. 49:3 (September 2014): 642-651

Leonard Hummel, “By its Fruits? Mystical and Visionary States of Consciousness Occasioned by Entheogens,” Zygon, vol. 49, no. 3 (September 2014) : 685-695

Michael Lerner and Michael Lyvers, “Values and Beliefs of Psychedelic Drug Users: A Cross-Cultural Study,” Journal of Psychoactive Drugs 38:2  (June 2006): 143-147

David P. Luke and Marios Kittenis, “A Preliminary Survey of Paranormal Experiences with Psychoactive Drugs,” The Journal of Parapsychology 69:2 (2005): 305-327

W.A. Richards, “Here and Now: Discovering the Sacred with Entheogens,” Zygon 49:3 (Sept, 2014):652-665

Sleep paralysis can be defined in several ways. In terms of the experiencer, it can be described as “a visitation by a malevolent creature which attacked its victims as they slept” (Cox). More clinically, sleep paralysis is understood as “a transient,conscious state of involuntary immobility occurring when falling asleep or upon wakening” (Cheyne, 2002). Research into sleep paralysis has produced compelling evidence that the phenomenon can be explained by brain chemistry and physiology in conjunction with REM sleep. But is that all there is to it?


Patricia Brooks and John H. Peever, “Identification of the Transmitter and Receptor Mechanisms Responsible for REM Sleep Paralysis,” The Journal of Neuroscience (July 18, 2012): 9785-9795

J. A. Cheyne, S. Rueffer, and Ian R. Newby-Clark, “Hypnagogic and Hypnopompic Hallucinations during Sleep Paralysis: Neurological and Cultural Construction of the Night-Mare,” Consciousness and Cognition 8 (1999): 319–337

J. A. Cheyne, “Situational factors affecting sleep paralysis and associated hallucinations: position and timing effects,” Journal of Sleep Research 11 (2002): 169–177

Ann M. Cox, “Sleep Paralysis and Folklore,” Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine Open 6(7) (2015): 1-4

Peeranormal’s inaugural Halloween episode focuses on academic research into vampires and ghosts with special guest Dr. Judd Burton from burtonbeyond.com. Our hosts take a look at vampirism as centuries-old myth and modern phenomenon. Where did the vampire legend come from? What were the historical circumstances since the late 18th century that contributed to belief in the fateful undead, hungry for blood? What about ghosts? Is there any empirical evidence that would suggest people can experience a supernatural presence in places said to be haunted? How would scientists try to make that case? 


Michael Bell, “Vampires and Death in New England, 1784 to 1892,” Anthropology and Humanism 31:2 (2006): 124–140

Jaffe and Cataldo, “Clinical Vampirism: Blending Myth and Reality,” Bulletin of the American Academy of Psychiatric and the Law 22:4 (1994): 533-544

Moreno Tiziani, “Vampires and Vampirism: Pathological Roots of a Myth,” Antrocom 5:2 (2009): 133-137

Michaeleen Maher, “Quantitative Investigation of the General Wayne Inn,” Journal of Parapsychology 64 (2000): 365-390

Wiseman, Watt, Stevens, Greening, O’Keefe, “An Investigation into Alleged Hauntings,” British Journal of Psychology 94 (May 2003): 195-211

Crop circles are well known — patterns that appear in fields of crops when certain areas of the field are compressed. Investigators have long noted how the stalks are bent uniformly, without visible damage. This episode of Peeranormal takes a look at some of the sparse academic peer-reviewed research on crop circles to discuss if they are man-made, created by an unknown natural force, or something paranormal.

EVP (“Electronic Voice Phenomena”) are “a class of allegedly mysterious vocal recordings, and while several explanations have been offered to explain their origin, the overwhelming majority of EVP researchers believe that their recordings constitute physical evidence of contact with the afterlife. In other words, most EVP researchers believe that it is possible, using various radio and electrical engineering techniques, to record the voices of ghosts” (Banks, 77). This episode of Peeranormal discusses several journal articles about the phenomena and efforts to test the viability of a paranormal explanation.

Articles mentioned in the episode:
Banks 2001 Rorschach Audio – Ghost Voices and Perceptual Creativity
Baruss 2001 Failure to Replicate Electronic Voice Phenomenon
Nees Phillips Auditory Pareidolia – Perceptions of Purportedly Paranormal and Ambiguous Auditory Stimuli