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Observations placeholder

Bayless, Raymond - I dreamed that I had killed an elderly lady and carried her head around in a box



Type of Spiritual Experience


For convenience I have placed this observation under Attila von Szalay, as the two men worked together.

A description of the experience

Experiences of a Psychical researcher – Raymond Bayless

I would like to describe one last personal experience which was originally published in the March, 1968, Journal of the Society for Psychical Research, and I will relate the incident exactly as it was described in the Journal.

"During the evening of August 10, 1965, after I had been in bed quite wide awake for about thirty minutes-the lights were turned off-I became seized with what can best be described as a most unpleasant obsessive thought. It seemed that there was a rotted head of an old dead woman under my bed and, though I naturally recognized the irrational nature of this thought, I could not rid myself of it.

After some minutes I turned on a light, in actual desperation looked under the bed, and made a search of the house to see if I could find a possible source of this unpleasant and ridiculous idea. While engaged in these activities I still could not free myself of my obsessive thought.

Exactly as though one had turned off a switch, the idea of the hideous head suddenly left me completely, and I immediately looked at the clock-it was 11:00 p.m. There was, incidentally, no thought in my mind that this curious experience was in any way paranormal.

The following morning Mr. Ceil Smith called and spontaneously told me about a strange dream that he had the previous night. He said that he had dreamed that he had killed an old woman and carried her head about with him. He then remarked that he awakened at exactly 11:00 p.m.-he also had looked at the clock. His remarks were completely spontaneous and I had made sure that I said nothing until he had finished his account. I then told him of my experience.

As an investigator of psychical phenomena, I consider this incident paranormal in origin, and doubly valuable inasmuch as it was not a tale related to me but a personal experience admitting of no doubt whatsoever. "

The following are notes made on the same day by Mr. Smith:

 "'I visited Raymond Bayless on August 11, 1965, and mentioned to him that I had had a particularly unpleasant dream. I dreamed that I had killed an elderly lady and carried her head around in a box. The dream was so horrible that it awakened me. I noticed that the time was exactly 11:00 p.m. Bayless then mentioned that he had had an odd experience that occurred at the time that I was having my dream. His experience involved the head of an old woman. Bayless remarked that the obsessive thought suddenly terminated at 11:00 p.m. on the same date.' "

The original notes were made by me on August 11, 1965.”

The source of the experience

Szalay, Attila von

Concepts, symbols and science items


Science Items

Activities and commonsteps



Dreaming and lucid dreaming