Supernatural Reversion

READ SHORT STORY BELOW (about 2100 words)

Regardless of what you’ve heard about the practice, or your opinion of the results, or even to whom it’s most associated, Supernatural Reversion was developed by anthropologist Dr. Ernst Von Kampf. In his own words, he conceived it to “Help individuals experience the pure essence of their spiritual heritage.”

Although his teachings and practice are controversial, his classes are the most popular in the social sciences.

In particular, third-year students are eligible to volunteer for a “Non-drug reversion experience that may invoke inspirations of a primordial and intimately personal energetic beingness of pure self.”

CONTROVERSY

Critics complained that his work should only be available in the psychology department. He responded that his goals transcended the mind. Further, he stated that attempts to constrain his work to that field were akin to describing Earth’s atmosphere as merely a medium to inflate tires.

Although tales of re-experiencing past lives were common enough to keep his adversaries protesting that it was just a form of regression analysis, it was the testimonials that purported encounters with pure energy that invoked further collegiate ire. Subjects stated they were experiencing their core selves stripped of any physical construct: an energy essence. Some likened it to communing with God.

It wasn’t just the psych professors who were irritated. Certain physics professors derided the testimonials of those who described their experience as void of time. Statements that they could freely move back and forth within a chronological reference much earlier than our perceived world weren’t so problematic. What was described as delusional was the idea that they could change personal circumstances in the present and future by reorienting the past.

Indeed, any casual visit to the writings of those who described their encounters would automatically invite depictions of “delusion,” since their reports routinely assaulted the credulity of our accepted reality.

Most who wrote of their encounters were not rebuffed at the lack of external validation by those without firsthand familiarity.

Nevertheless, all the backlash paled in response to the depictions of encountering other-world beings. A number of the faculty considered such preposterous and undeserving of any academic approbation.

Despite the skepticism and controversy, plenty of third-year students volunteered. Part of the prerequisites for participating as a subject was observing others in their experience. As Dr. Von Kampf taught, no amount of theory could supplant a personal encounter, which was, for many — life-changing.

But not for all. Some found it interesting, but not life-altering. They didn’t encounter anything unusual and considered it merely pleasant. Rarely, though, a very few found it unsettling.

EMILY

On the first day of the fall semester, Emily Dawson submitted her application to volunteer for the reversion experience. She had not only observed four others go through theirs, which included six sessions each, but she had so thoroughly documented the process that her notes were used to update Dr. Von Kampf’s routine, which he continuously revised over the years to improve efficiency.

When the first day arrived, she sat in a comfortable chair. A nurse attached sensors and a video operator readied two cameras: one for her and another for the instruments. Three student observers settled in. Dr. Von Kampf sat nearby. Session #1 was more of an orientation process. Ten minutes later, Dr. Kampf guided Emily to find a pleasant experience, earlier than she could readily recall. She described climbing to the top of an old pine tree in her childhood backyard, towering over all the local houses. The commanding view was wondrous to this five-year-old. Twenty minutes later it was over. Emily felt slightly energized and said, “I can’t believe I remembered that.”

Dr. Von Kampf smiled, “It’s all there and available. But not all can readily pierce the clouds of yesteryear.”

Emily considered sessions two through four as more intriguing, which were much longer: she was visiting past lives. Her studies helped prepare her, but really, she felt she would have recognized them anyway since they were so intimately her own self, regardless of whether they were 100 or 1000 years ago or more. It was not much different than revisiting something from a year ago or ten years ago or climbing a tree at five, replete with the emotions, thoughts, and sensations encountered at the time. She was especially pleased to resolve an incident when she drowned on a sinking Greek ship in the Peloponnesian war that turned out to be the root of her fear of water. Although uncomfortable while revisiting it, she felt tremendous relief afterward — even resolving to take swimming lessons since her fear evaporated.

It was in the fifth session that things changed.

Emily felt a profound separation from physical existence. She navigated through realms of vibration, transcending the constraints of time. It was an ethereal dance, and as she glided through the cosmic tapestry, she encountered entities beyond comprehension.

Beings communicated via thought transference, sharing evocative insights. Although they cautioned about other forces that impose reduced awareness to command restraint and dominance, they mostly spoke of an interconnectedness across time and space that surpassed the boundaries of life and death.

Meanwhile, Dr. Von Kampf and his team monitored the session closely. The readings on their instruments displayed patterns that corresponded to varying emotions and physical conditions.

As the session came to an end, Emily smiled and stated she had never felt so peaceful. She then recounted her experience on video, as was standard after each occasion.

Her final scheduled experience took a dark turn. Twenty minutes into it, Emily stopped responding to the doctor’s guidance. She stopped answering questions or speaking at all. The biofeedback monitors displayed increased heart rate, higher blood pressure, and quickened breathing. Tears swelled around Emily’s eyes. Her lips trembled. Convulsions jolted through her body and she grimaced in pain.

The observers exchanged wide-eyed glances. Dr. Von Kampf remained calm but he was suppressing his rising sense of unease.

In a few moments, all of Emily’s vitals returned to normal before she opened her eyes. After grabbing a few tissues, blowing her nose, and dabbing her eyes, she directed her gaze to the doctor. “That was wild.”

“Can you elaborate, please?”

Hesitantly, Emily chronicled to the camera her confrontation with a shadowy figure with no identifiable features. It hardly moved. But it resonated with a pervasive darkness, the likes of which she had never encountered, and left her seemingly paralyzed. It conveyed a noxious suffocation. It suffused her consciousness with dread. The beings she’d met before were absent. The dark entity would appear and disappear and she sensed her encounter was more accidental than purposeful, although she couldn’t be sure. Whereas the earlier entities conveyed promise and life, this epitomized abhorrence. She was convinced that the despair was so profound that death could offer no escape. Finally, she was left with a hazy awareness that she was not supposed to remember the encounter.

The observers’ faces reflected their concern.

“Nothing was stated.” Emily searched for words, “But I felt deeply in danger. The potential for anguish seemed destined and infinite. “

One of the observers, a young woman named Sarah, blurted out, “We need to shut this down.”

Dr. Von Kampf looked at Emily, her face dissipating a lingering, haunted look. “No,” he said finally, his voice surprisingly firm. “We can’t shut it down. We can’t exactly leave Emily hanging with this kind of experience, can we?”

He turned to Emily, his voice softer now. “Why don’t you get some rest? We’ll discuss this more tomorrow.”

Emily left the session shaken and physically drained. Yet, sleep did not come easy.

The following day, Emily sat with Dr. Von Kampf. This time with only the camera operator as an assistant. “Emily,” Dr. Von Kampf began, “Your experience was more dramatic than usual. What do you say we explore this further?”

Emily nodded, “You know, although the earlier sessions, to me, represent insights into some kind of opening — like a deeper and perhaps universal truth, yesterday’s was like a block. An artificial one, at that. Not fabricated. But as some kind of coerced reaction against, let’s say understanding, for lack of a better term.”

“Can you say anything more about the shadow figure?”

“It seemed to know me intimately. There’s some kind of connection. An undesirable one. Even though I first thought I had never seen it before, last night while trying to sleep, I recognized that it was faintly present in bad times in the past. Like when I was very sick as a child and when I was recovering from a car accident a few years ago. Even when I was going through a breakup last year.”

The doctor finished writing some notes before responding. “I have a theory. I believe all the entities are supernatural, but the earlier ones are trying to help and this last one may be a manifestation of some ancient force, something that has been lurking in the shadows of human consciousness for eons. A force that most cannot face.”

“What do we do now?” She wasn’t one to back down from a challenge.

“Emily, as a reminder, over the years I’ve had a few subjects who never finished their sessions because they caught a glimpse of something that frightened them. They described it in similar terms to you. That’s why we limit the sessions to six, to avoid that potential — although you are the first to bump into this so early.”

“Maybe they weren’t strong enough? Maybe it feeds on fear?”

THE ENCOUNTER

The next was unlike any other. The familiar room was charged with the mutual energy of everyone involved. The camera operator was checking and double-checking controls and settings. The observers were already taking notes. Dr. Kampf and the nurse monitored the vitals, with a mix of anticipation and concern. Emily sat in the chair, not with apprehension, but with fortitude.

Shortly after the session began, a sense of foreboding washed over her. It wasn’t the cold dread of the previous encounter, but a prickling, primal fear that sent goosebumps erupting across her skin. A thick, metallic tang coated her tongue. Then, it appeared again — an oppressive presence of inky blackness.

Emily fought down the rising bile in her throat. This was pure, concentrated malice. Panic clawed at her. In her mind, she emanated a psychic shriek, a cacophony of torment that threatened to unravel her very sanity.

She barely heard Dr. Kampf’s voice before it drifted into oblivion: “Emily, face it — as calmly as you can….”

A fresh wave of terror threatened to drown her. Tears streamed down her face, hot against her chilled skin. She was trapped, a fly caught in a web of pure nightmare.

Then, a memory flickered. Not a pleasant one — the car accident, the searing pain, the crushing darkness. But within it, a flicker of defiance, a spark of will to live amidst chaos.

The entity loomed, a monstrosity of writhing, its form feeding on her terror. But this time, Emily met its gaze. Instinct took over. She poured every ounce of defiance she possessed into her stare, along with a silent scream of “No More!”

For a horrifying moment, everything stilled. Then, a tremor ran through the entity. Its form flickered like a dying black flame.

Emily held firm. She channeled the memory of conquering her fear of water, the exhilaration of pushing past her limits.

It further receded, then vanished.

Soon, she could hear Dr. Von Kamp’s guidance again. In a few moments, she opened her eyes. Exhaustion washed over her like a tidal wave, but beneath it, a surge of exhilaration.

EPILOGUE

The waiting list to get into Dr. Von Kamp’s classes grew longer.

Sarah, one of the student observers, reported to the university administration that Dr. Von Kampf’s program was dangerous and irresponsible.

The university, pressured by both intrigued students and concerned faculty, formed a committee to review Dr. Von Kampf’s research. The committee’s findings were mixed. They acknowledged the validity of his core process — guiding a relaxed, controlled, and meditative state into the subconscious — but expressed skepticism about the nature of the beings encountered. In summation, they recommended further study with stricter controls and a more diverse pool of subjects.

Emily continued her studies with Dr. Von Kampf, but with a newfound focus on integrating those experiences into her daily life. She also agreed to allow her video sessions and debriefs to be made public, resulting in requests for interviews. She politely declined most, choosing to focus on writing a book.

Dr. Von Kampf agreed to a few interviews and one of the resulting articles ended with a quote from Emily’s last video debrief: “I won a battle that I didn’t know I’ve been fighting forever. But I could also see there’s a larger war beyond what I could experience.”

by George Alger

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