Lethbridge, T C - A Step in the Dark – Graham Tidman relives a past life
Type of Spiritual Experience
We obviously do not know, but one possibility is that this triggered a past life perception
A description of the experience
T C Lethbridge – A Step in the Dark
Well, in May, 1964, it had been arranged for me to be a kind of actor here in a television Programme to be produced later at Bristol. John Irving, the producer, and his cameraman were due here at Hole at eleven o'clock. About this time I saw a car drive up and come to a stop on a flat place designed for it to the left of my window. I went out expecting to see John Irving and instead found a completely unknown young man. As I reached it, he climbed out of the car looking a little dazed.
'I feel odd,' he said.
'Great God!' I thought, 'perhaps he has ptomaine poisoning, or something we cannot cope with here.' But instead of asking about his symptoms, something prompted me to-say:
'You aren't going to tell me that you have been here before'
Not knowing what he normally looked like, I cannot say that he looked pale, or startled, but I think he did both. 'Oh yes,' he said. 'Are there some other buildings behind the house that I can see?'
'Yes, indeed,' I said. 'There is a kind of court behind.'
'May I look at it?' he asked anxiously.
'Yes of course,' I said. 'Look at anything you like and go where you like.'
John Irving still had not arrived, so I went with the young man, who was, it seemed, the cameraman. We walked past the east end of the house. He looked at the garden wall, which I had found in a rotten condition and cut into hollow curves.
'It was not like that,' he said. 'There used to be buildings against that wall.'
'So there were,' I said. 'I have heard that there were pig-sties and cow sheds there.'
He thought a bit. We walked round into the court. He looked at it carefully. 'Yes,' he said. 'This is just as it was in my dreams.' We walked back again. Mind you, I had never seen him before and did not even know what his name was. I just assumed he was John lrving's cameraman from Bristol. We returned to the east side of the house. He looked at my scalloped walls and the little herb garden I had made for my wife.
'There were buildings there,' he said. 'And they were pulling them down and someone said: "Now we will be able to see the sea"
Now it is rather difficult to make light conversation in a situation of this kind. 'Yes, of course, they could see the sea,' I said. 'There it is.' One could see a tiny wedge of sea like looking over the backsight of a rifle, but it was very small. Trees had evidently grown up on a ridge half a mile away since the time this man was talking about.
'There ought to be .a nursery garden over there outside the gate,' said my companion. 'On the left side and sloping down the hill.'
'Come and look,' I said. When we came here eight years ago, there was nothing but a wilderness of nettles, briars, couchgrass and rushes; but we are slowly reclaiming it and there was a kitchen garden on the eastward side of the wall. He looked over the wall in a kind of dazed fashion. 'Yes, that is right,' he said.
'I can't understand it. I have never been here before and nowhere near it; but this is exactly as I saw it in my dream and I have had that dream five times.'
About this time John Irving drove up and we had to discontinue this fascinating conversation. We became involved in the amazing jargon of the television world: 'Zoom up, zoom down. Pan out,' and so on. But I gathered from the cameraman that he had never been within miles of the place and no relative of his had ever been here either. He had not heard what it looked like now, neither could he have heard what it once looked like.
We knew various things. Most of the Tudor buildings are much as they were several hundred years ago. But there had been pig-sties and cattle sheds where our friend had seen them in his dreams. A new roof had been put on the house; and a date scratched on the masonry of a chimney in the attic gives that as 1929. The cameraman who is called Graham Tidman, had, and not long ago, dreamt about seeing it at the time when the reconstruction was going on. But we were in the year 1964 and the reconstruction of the house was done about 1929. There was a gap of 32 years and he cannot have been much older than that himself if as old! He could not have seen the rebuilding, or anything of the sort, and certainly would not have remembered the remark about being able to see the sea.
We seem to have got a complete hiatus in time. It made such an impression on Mr. Tidman that, in spite of pouring rain, he brought his family of small children next day and photographed the site of his dreams. Poor little dears, I was sorry for the children with the rain pouring off them in streams. But what an extraordinary story this is. What could have happened?