Bizarre Beliefs by Simon Hoggart

A hugely informative book on the world’s mysteries from journalist and parliamentary sketch writer Simon Hoggart (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simon_Hoggart¬†and http://www.theguardian.com/profile/simonhoggart). From fire walking to the prophesies of Nostradamus, this pares the fiction from many popular theories, and urges us to educate ourselves through critical inquiry.

Jeane Dixon claims she predicted the assassination of President Kennedy, and to millions this prediction gives her the credibility to be a top psychic. Yet the media and Dixon’s devoted followers dare not question, or even recognize, the many failed predictions she has offered over the years. Nostradamus is so well-known today that many people actually fear the date he predicted for World War III. Yet when his ‘prophecies’ do not come true, the fiction-hungry media and public turn a blind eye.

Bizarre Beliefs (1995) spans the globe in search of rational and factual explanations for UFO claims, alien abductions, the Bermuda Triangle, crop circles, evidence of a living Elvis Presley, fortune tellers, Nostradamus’s writings, spiritualism, astrology, graphology, fire walking, biorhythms, hypnosis, divining, ghosts, the curse of Tutankhamun, the Loch Ness monster, and ‘shocking’ coincidences. It questions our ability to believe the outrageously unbelievable, and discloses the gullibility of the human mind, which discounts reason for the romance of the absurd. An amusing, and outstandingly well-written account of the world of weird.

224 pages in Richard Cohen Books Ltd.

ISBN 978-1860660221

Simon Hoggart

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