Interview-Alternate Perceptions Magazine, March 2016
An Interview with:
Paul F. Eno:
Leading Paranormal Investigator and Author with Alternative Perspectives on the Unexplained
by: Brent Raynes
PAUL F. ENO BIO
Paul Eno is best known as the elder of the father-son co-hosts of the CBS Radio and WOON 1240 Boston/Worcester/Providence drive-time show “Behind the Paranormal,” with an estimated 3 million listeners.
Paul was one of the first paranormal investigators of the early 1970s, beginning while he was studying for the priesthood. His early mentors included parapsychology pioneer Dr. Louisa Rhine, Fr. John J. Nicola S.J. (technical advisor for the film The Exorcist) and legendary, first-generation "ghost hunters" Ed and Lorraine Warren. Paul graduated from two seminaries but was expelled from a third because of his paranormal work with less than two years to go before ordination. He ended up as an award-winning New England journalist and the author of five books on the paranormal and two on history.
Two of his books, Faces at the Window (New River Press 1998) and Footsteps in the Attic (New River Press 2002) are already considered classics of paranormal literature. Several of his cases are famous, especially the Bridgeport poltergeist outbreak of 1974, which made headlines all over the world, and the ongoing Litchfield County (Conn.) paranormal flap, subject of the 2015 book “The Haunted House Diaries” by William J. Hall.
His next book, written with his son and co-host Ben Eno, is “Behind the Paranormal: Everything You Know is Wrong,” slated for release late this year by Schiffer Publishing.
Early on, Paul found that many ghost cases, if thoroughly researched, turned into UFO cases. This led to theories and methods that go way beyond the classic spiritualist interpretation of the paranormal, and involving previously unsuspected connections between ghosts, cryptids and UFOs.
Paul has appeared on the History, Discovery and Travel Channels, and he and his son Ben have lectured all over America and in Europe. WEBSITES: www.BehindTheParanormal.com www.NewEnglandGhosts.com
Brent Raynes: Paul, please share with us some about yourself and how you became so deeply involved in the field of the paranormal?
Paul Eno: The starting point was the most traumatic event of my life: At the age of 7, I witnessed my father’s suicide. I was a 2nd grader at a Catholic school, where we were taught that if you did things like eat a hamburger on Friday, miss Mass on Sunday or commit suicide, you could go to hell. My dad was a wonderful, kind man. How could he have gone to hell? One of the good nuns got me through all that.
I entered the seminary, back when you could still do so at the tender age of 14. I still wondered about my father, and I also wondered about the stories of ghosts one encounters in every culture. Couple that with my exposure to the Roman Catholic doctrine of “purgatory” – a theoretical state between heaven and hell – and I had the question that actually prompted my research: Could ghosts be souls stuck in purgatory?
In late 1970, I found a place to test the theory: the long-abandoned and overgrown “Village of Voices” in Pomfret, Connecticut, about 60 miles from where I lived near Hartford. In three expeditions there in 1971 and 1972 – all involving other seminary students, a historian and a photo expert – we experienced apparitions, along with the voices and sounds of everyday life, right down to the sounds of metal farm implements.
All this made me question not only purgatory but just about everything else. These people didn’t seem to be dead at all, never mind in purgatory. It was all so physical. How could these even be spirits? Were there “spirits” of farm tools, wagon wheels, cows, horses, dogs and other things we heard?
Maybe “ghosts” had more to do with the nature of time than they did with death.
Meanwhile, I was taken under the wings of four different paranormal “legends” as the ‘70s continued.
One was Fr. John J. Nicola of Washington D.C., whom I met through my brother, a priest who taught in Washington. Fr. Nicola was a Jesuit priest and probably the greatest expert on exorcism of his day. He was the technical advisor for the film “The Exorcist” (something he regretted) and was involved in the original case. This gave me the theological perspective on the paranormal, which is NOT taught in the seminary.
Then there was Dr. Louisa Rhine of Duke University, with whom I corresponded and eventually met. She and her husband, Dr. J.B. Rhine, were the founders or modern parapsychology. Thus I was exposed to the scientific perspective on the paranormal.
Finally, there were Ed and Lorraine Warren, probably the founders of modern pop “ghost hunting.” Lorraine read something I wrote about the Village of Voices case, liked the purgatory idea, and I ended up quite close to them personally, while working with them on cases from 1972-1978. By ‘78 I thought their methods and motivations were fishy, so Ed and I had an outwardly amicable parting and went our separate ways. Thus I got the popular, hobbyist perspective on the paranormal.
My personal opinion today is that all three perspectives are wrong.
I continued through other cases into the late 70s in confusion about what I was actually dealing with. In 1979, I encountered the “ghost” of someone who wasn’t even dead, with multiple witnesses and work with the girl herself and the people who had seen her in their house 120 miles away.
That did it. I started looking into the physics of time, found out that (according to most physicists, at least) linear time as we experience it doesn’t even exist, that there are almost certainly many parallel worlds with versions of ourselves and others who might have died here and not there, and with entirely different laws of physics.
That was the beginning of the “multiverse” theories that my son Ben and I use today. And the results have been astounding.
In 1976, I was still in the seminary, about two years from ordination. But the faculty was fed up with my paranormal research and threw me out. I ended up a newspaper and magazine journalist!
Brent Raynes: I heard you a couple months ago, or thereabouts, being interviewed by Tim Beckley and Tim Swartz, along with Rosemary Ellen Guiley, on a show called Exploring the Bizarre. I distinctly recall an amazing experience you described of investigating a haunting/poltergiest situation in Connecticut, as I recall, and an up close and personal entity encounter you had that was more than mere ectoplasmic whispy stuff. Can you tell us about that episode once again?
Paul Eno: You must be referring to my experience on the evening of the second day of my involvement in the Bridgeport (Connecticut) poltergeist case of 1974. Our assumption was that we were dealing with “demons.”
Ed and Lorraine Warren had left the house to do a TV interview and I was left there with the 10-year-old girl, the parents, a neighbor and a reporter. We were all in the living room and could feel a powerful energy forming down the hall in the kitchen. As this energy grew, four faint, gauzy figures came down the hall and into the living room.
I put the girl behind me because I knew they were after her. One came and stood right in front of me. Instinctively, I pushed toward it and I felt physical resistance. I even felt bone structure, though it didn’t seem human. This was a physical being.
This was my first lesson in how not to deal with “parasites,” as we call them today. As I became angry that it was after the girl, it fed on the anger and got stronger. The energy became so powerful that I pulled the family out of the house, then called the Warrens. Fortunately, the police had pushed the crowds back to each end of the street and we didn’t emerge into a mob of curiosity-seekers.
Brent Raynes: What other potentially significant personal revelations have happened to you in the field?
Paul Eno: One result of adopting a “multiverse” view of the paranormal is that all sorts of connections between seemingly unrelated phenomena have become apparent. Why do so many people who have UFO encounters also report ghost and/or poltergeist phenomena in their homes? Why are cryptids often seen in areas of UFO activity? v Being aware of the multiversal process (energy, objects and even inhabitants coming and going – sometimes intentionally – across the “branes” or boundaries of parallel worlds, usually in a very physical way) completely transformed paranormal concepts and experiences for me.
On a very personal level, there is much that I never spoke publically about until recently, primarily because it made me look like a psychic or medium, which is not what I do, and I don’t think those people “get it” anyway. But since becoming aware of the constant interactions in our multiverse, if that’s what it is, there have been a number of interesting encounters with what might be called “neighbors” from parallel worlds in the course of my paranormal work and my son’s. These would have been grossly misinterpreted as spirits or ignored completely under the standard, narrow spiritualist theories.
Brent Raynes: Where has your research and investigative work brought you to at this point? Paul Eno: Instead of spirits of the dead or trying to prove the existence of the soul or some kind of afterlife, the paranormal seems to provide a panorama of a rich, elegant and intimately connected series of all possible worlds where versions of ourselves, and everyone and everything else – alive or dead- exist in all possible forms simultaneously. This makes death (as in the absence of life) impossible and our usual understanding of just about everything, including the paranormal, impossibly narrow and completely inadequate.
Brent Raynes: Although this may be outside the usual area of your exploration and expertise, your friend and colleague Rosemary Guiley has tackled the alien/Djinn question quite extensively in recent years, and the UFO/alien encounter experiencers all seem to possess heightened paranormal profiles. Many times they report that following their "alien" encounters they notice the sudden appearance of psychic sensitivities. These could be poltergeist episodes, seeing ghosts/spirits, telepathy, clairvoyance, clairaudience, psychokinesis, premonitions, etc. Have you stumbled upon any of this in your own work/studies and do you have any thoughts or insights on it?
Paul Eno: This is precisely what follows from what I’ve said previously. Every phenomenon you name could be explained by routine multiversal interactions. My son and I expect this in our research. So when called in on a case, we never look at just one house or family. We will study an entire area, sometimes for years. One of our original cases of this type began in Litchfield County, Connecticut, and is the subject of William J. Hall’s 2015 book “The Haunted House Diaries.” The case is ongoing and keeps getting bigger.
UFO researchers are becoming vividly aware of these connections, and we have been consulting with several prominent people when they run into this in their own cases. We are also in demand as speakers at UFO conventions.
Brent Raynes: What would you like people to know about the paranormal?
Paul Eno: That nothing in it is what it appears to be. Also, that they should forget everything they think they know about it because it’s the first day of school.
Brent Raynes: What do you hope that your work, and that of your colleagues in this field, will ultimately achieve?
Paul Eno: First, I hope that we’re right about this multiverse approach. One never knows, and a large dose of humility is essential before attaining any true knowledge. But assuming that it is correct, we would hope for an expansion of understanding about who and what we really are and what our ultimate destiny can be.
Here is an anomaly that Pual Eno videotaped in 2010