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POP01 - Mother Shipton

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This POP (Power of Prophecy or Problems of Prophecy) series
that I am presenting,
shares some of my own experiences in that search.

Those who are not interested in the subject
or who feel that they already Know ALL Truth
or at least the source for all Truth will find it tedious,
and probably will also feel that I am ill-informed.
And those who feel that it is impossible to find Prophetic Truths
will consider these accounts silly.

I have carefully investigated many claims of prophetic ability,
and in the series I will be reporting on some of those investigations.
I am beginning this series with my investigation
of a famous prophetess by the name of Mother Shipton.

Mother Shipton was born Ursula Sontheil
in 1488 in a cave beside the river Nidd
in North Yorkshire, England.
The location remains today as a popular visitor site,
attracting great numbers of visitors annually.

Since 1641 there have been more than
50 different editions of books about her
and her prophecies
and a great amount of information about her
can be found on the Internet.

Many people feel that many of her visions came true
within her own lifetime and in subsequent centuries.
Mother Shipton is said to have predicted important historical events
many years ahead of their time -
the Great Fire of London in 1666,
the defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588 -
as well as the advent of modern technology.

She is said to have even forecast her own death in 1561.
She died in 1561.
Today many find her prophecies are still proving uncannily accurate.
She wrote her prophecies like poems
and after the following poem
I present my own research about her -
prior to the time of the Internet.
----------A Version of One of Her Poems----------

And now a word, in uncouth rhyme
Of what shall be in future time
Then upside down the world shall be
And gold found at the root of tree

All England's sons that plough the land
Shall oft be seen with Book in hand
The poor shall now great wisdom know

Great houses stand in far-flung vale
All covered o'er with snow and hail
A carriage without horse will go
Disaster fill the world with woe.

In London, Primrose Hill shall be
In centre hold a Bishop's See

Around the world men's thoughts will fly
Quick as the twinkling of an eye.

And water shall great wonders do
How strange. And yet it shall come true.

Through towering hills proud men shall ride
No horse or ass move by his side.

Beneath the water, men shall walk
Shall ride, shall sleep, shall even talk.
And in the air men shall be seen
In white and black and even green

A great man then, shall come and go
For prophecy declares it so.

In water, iron, then shall float
As easy as a wooden boat

Gold shall be seen in stream and stone
In land that is yet unknown.

And England shall admit a Jew
You think this strange, but it is true
The Jew that once was held in scorn
Shall of a Christian then be born.

A house of glass shall come to pass
In England. But Alas, alas
A war will follow with the work
Where dwells the Pagan and the Turk

These states will lock in fiercest strife
And seek to take each others life.
When North shall thus divide the south
And Eagle build in Lions mouth

Then tax and blood and cruel war
Shall come to every humble door.
Three times shall lovely sunny France
Be led to play a bloody dance

Before the people shall be free
Three tyrant rulers shall she see.
Three rulers in succession be
Each springs from different dynasty.

Then when the fiercest strife is done
England and France shall be as one.
The British olive shall next then twine
In marriage with a German vine.

Men walk beneath and over streams
Fulfilled shall be their wondrous dreams.
For in those wondrous far off days

The women shall adopt a craze
To dress like men, and trousers wear
And to cut off their locks of hair
They'll ride astride with brazen brow
As witches do on broomstick now.

And roaring monsters with man atop
Does seem to eat the verdant crop
And men shall fly as birds do now
And give away the horse and plough.

There'll be a sign for all to see
Be sure that it will certain be.
Then love shall die and marriage cease
And nations wane as babes decrease
And wives shall fondle cats and dogs
And men live much the same as hogs.

In nineteen hundred and twenty six
Build houses light of straw and sticks.
For then shall mighty wars be planned
And fire and sword shall sweep the land.

Footsteps will be seen in every room,
Left by none other than the man on the moon.
One man's heart shall be given to another,
Blood shall be shared by sister and brother.

Voices shall rise in the land of the black,
And the Holy Land shall come under attack.
China will rise as some have foretold,
But the wall that falls will not be so old.

When pictures seem alive with movements free
When boats like fishes swim beneath the sea,
When men like birds shall scour the sky
Then half the world, deep drenched in blood shall die.

For those who live the century through
In fear and trembling this shall do.
Flee to the mountains and the dens
To bog and forest and wild fens.

For storms will rage and oceans roar
When Gabriel stands on sea and shore
And as he blows his wondrous horn
Old worlds die and new be born.

A fiery dragon will cross the sky
Six times before this earth shall die
Mankind will tremble and frightened be
for the sixth heralds in this prophecy.

For seven days and seven nights
Man will watch this awesome sight.

The tides will rise beyond their ken
To bite away the shores and then
The mountains will begin to roar
And earthquakes split the plain to shore.

And flooding waters, rushing in
Will flood the lands with such a din
That mankind cowers in muddy fen
And snarls about his fellow men.

He bares his teeth and fights and kills
And secrets food in secret hills
And ugly in his fear, he lies
To kill marauders, thieves and spies.

Man flees in terror from the floods
And kills, and rapes and lies in blood
And spilling blood by mankind's hands
Will stain and bitter many lands

And when the dragon's tail is gone,
Man forgets, and smiles, and carries on
To apply himself - too late, too late
For mankind has earned deserved fate.

His masked smile - his false grandeur,
Will serve the Gods their anger stir.
And they will send the Dragon back
To light the sky - his tail will crack

Upon the earth and rend the earth
And man shall flee, King, Lord, and serf.
But slowly they are routed out
To seek diminishing water spout

And men will die of thirst before
The oceans rise to mount the shore.
And lands will crack and rend anew
You think it strange. It will come true.

And in some far off distant land
Some men - oh such a tiny band
Will have to leave their solid mount
And span the earth, those few to count,

Who survives this and then
Begin the human race again.
But not on land already there
But on ocean beds, stark, dry and bare

Not every soul on Earth will die
As the Dragons tail goes sweeping by.
Not every land on earth will sink
But these will wallow in stench and stink
Of rotting bodies of beast and man
Of vegetation crisped on land.

But the land that rises from the sea
Will be dry and clean and soft and free
Of mankind's dirt and therefore be
The source of man's new dynasty.

And those that live will ever fear
The dragons tail for many year
But time erases memory

You think it strange.
But it will be.
And before the race is built anew
A silver serpent comes to view

And spew out men of like unknown
To mingle with the earth now grown
Cold from its heat and these men can
Enlighten the minds of future man.

To intermingle and show them how
To live and love and thus endow
The children with the second sight.
A natural thing so that they might
Grow graceful, humble and when they do
The Golden Age will start anew.

The dragon's tail is but a sign
For mankind's fall and man's decline.

And before this prophecy is done
I shall be burned at the stake, at one
My body singed and my soul set free
You think I utter blasphemy
You're wrong. These things have come to me
This prophecy will come to be.


My mother-in-law, who lived to be 90,
during the whole of her adult life,
was a gatherer of newsprint curiosities.
These amounted to many thousands of items
which in her retirement she spent many hours,
days, weeks and months in sorting.

I gathered together empty cereal boxes,
covered them in various shades of wall paper,
and lined the walls of a room with shelves
to aid her in her task.
Eventually, I purchased over ten thousand dollars
of microfilming equipment
and hired three ladies for a summer
to microfilm all the material she had categorized.
There is sufficient resource in
the material for several books
and I may someday donate it to a library.

In reviewing this material on prophecy
I found a number of versions
of the poem by Mother Shipton.
This raised my curiosity
as to which version was correct
and so I made a trip to Chicago and
visited the Central Public Library on Michigan Avenue
where I inspected the listings in the main catalogue.

Some references to rare books
led me from one librarian to another
until I reached the chief librarian
who gave me a letter of introduction to the
Rare Books Archives located on the north side of Chicago.

Because of the lateness of the hour
I hailed a cab and informed the driver of my hurry,
which in retrospect proved to be an erroneous and incautious act.
I thence braced myself between the seats
and endured with white knuckles and clinched teeth
the most horrifying ride of my life.
This from one who has flown upside down in fighter jets,
ridden with high speed police escorts,
survived several auto crashes, and flown in antiquated aircraft
through the air pockets of arctic storms.

Upon arrival the driver turned to me and said,
"I thought you were in a hurry?".
"But not to reach the next Kingdom", I replied.

The building before which I was deposited was
an ordinary apartment house of a half dozen stories
and indistinguishable from the dozens of others
that lined the street.
The front entrance was unlocked and the foyer empty
so I passed through them
and a second set of doors into a gallery empty
except for a single uniformed policeman who immediately halted me.

Upon my presentation of the letter of introduction
he opened an elevator,
pushed a button for another floor and sent me on my way.

When the elevator doors opened I found myself in a gallery
similar to the first
and again occupied by a single uniformed policeman.
Once again my credentials were reviewed
and then I was escorted through a set of doors
to a receptionist who still again examined the credentials, interrogated me as to my purposes,
relieved me of my overcoat and briefcase
and finally led me away to a fish bowl sort of room
surrounded on all sides by clear glass paned windows
and in which there was but a single table and a single chair.

There shortly appeared another lady
who took in detail my request
and I was then left for another twenty minutes
to examine my fingernails.

Upon her return she brought with her a stack
of about a dozen old volumes
and pointed out a button that I was to push
when I was ready to depart.
I was then left alone to examine the treasure.

The volumes before me were truly ancient.
I am told that modern printing will not last near so long
because of the sulfur content of the paper.
The ages of the volumes spanned back over several centuries
and the most recent of them leapt frogged back
by many decades the earliest version that, until then,
I had been able to find upon the subject.

I first arranged the volumes in the order of their antiquity
and then set about to examine them.
The earliest volumes were of course set in Old English type
with the what appears to us as the f for s symbols,
and the quality of handset type was of course quite different
from what we are used to today,
as was also the nature of the prose.
Nevertheless, an hour and a half of study
afforded me numerous insights.

To my disappointment I found that in no case
which I could determine were the prophetic references to events
which have occurred
printed prior to the occurring of those events.
In these versions, in the ones that I had examined previously,
and in the many that I have examined subsequently,
there are often references to contemporary events
not found in all the versions.

In the version above
the lines starting from:

Footsteps will be seen in every room,
But the wall that falls will not be so old.

are of my own creation.

About the only reference that I found consistent,
was that regarding snow in the streets and on the housetops,
a symbolic reference that does give one pause to think.

I do not wish to be totally disparaging about the poem
for I do not feel that it is entirely without merit
but I do feel that it is an excellent example
of the caution with which one
must approach these matters.

There is really little of benefit
that can be communicated by prophetic writings
to anyone who does not have a pure spirit of
scientific inquiry and a mature method of historical analysis.

Much of what passes for education today,
even from the universities,
is pseudo scientific.
The true spirit of inquiry
into the underlying reality of things is most often missing.
The most advanced scientific thinkers
and the most advanced religious and mystical thinkers are of a kin
but their imitators dogmatically fall
into the morasses of materialism and
superstition, respectively.

I hope that I have not overly bored you
with this meandering of a raconteur,
and that you may be curious
about some of the other experiences
that I shall recount in this series.

Peace and love,
Bruce Beach

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