Earliest Examples of the Mandela Effect
There’s a common assumption in our modern western world that there is one shared reality, that can be factually verified through time and by people all around the world. This assumption may seem so obvious to be not worth mentioning–except that it’s quite possible that it’s untrue.
One of the things I’ve been tracking over the past 17 years by collecting first-hand field reports of reality shifts and alternate histories, is that just as we would likely all agree that there are many possible futures each of us might encounter, there are apparently also many possible pasts. Recent news reports of newly popularized memes such as the so-called “Mandela Effect” reported by Fiona Broome in 2010 and the “Berenstein Bears” reported by a blogger named Reece in 2012 are but two indicators that the public is becoming aware that history doesn’t always remain the same.
Throughout all of recorded western history, any time that people heard of someone having died, only to later find out they were actually still alive, we tended to consider it something akin to simple mistaken identity, such as American author Mark Twain once reported when writing in 1897 in a note to Frank Marshall White, “the report of my death was an exaggeration.” Most people interpreted discussions about someone supposedly having died and later recognized as alive as some kind of confusion, or mistake. Yet according to my research and surveys as reported in my book, Quantum Jumps, 27% out of 567 survey respondents reported that yes, they have “seen dead people and animals alive again.” If so many people are now reporting they’ve experienced this, what are the earliest documented cases of this phenomenon?
Earliest Reported “Mandela Effect” Cases
In a small sample size survey conducted in 2005, I reported that nine celebrities at that time were noted for having been reported dead by reputable sources, only to subsequently be reported very much alive again. In a note we might find interesting now, but that didn’t seem surprising at the time, nobody in the summer of 2005 mentioned Nelson Mandela.
Back in July 2005, the celebrity heading up the “Alive Again” list was Bob Keeshan, an American actor who played a TV character known as Captain Kangaroo. A whopping 26% of those surveyed at that time recalled that Bob Keeshan had died before 2004, and then died again in January 2004. The next most-often remembered “alive again” (aka “Mandela Effect”) celebrities back in 2005 included: Jane Goodall (15%), Larry Hagman (15%), Bob Hope (10%), Jack Palance (10%), Bea Arthur (5%), Ed Asner (5%), Walter Cronkite (5%), and Mariel Hemingway (5%).
Where was Nelson Mandela back in 2005?
We might well ask, “Why didn’t anyone mention Nelson Mandela being alive again back in 2005 when that first survey was conducted?” which is an excellent question. At that point in time in 2005, neither I nor anyone I surveyed made a point to mention remembering what many of us would later recall–that Nelson Mandela had died many years earlier than his currently recorded official date of death of December 5, 2013. Fiona Broome’s first mention of the Mandela Effect was still five years in the future, and he was not yet on anyone’s radar–including those who were starting to talk about the “Alive Again” phenomenon.
You might think perhaps Nelson Mandela was “lying low” while alive back in 2005, and not making major media appearances–yet according to current history, we find Mandela got huge media coverage in February 2005 when he came out of retirement from public life to give a speech in Trafalgar Square to 20,000 people. Mandela called for action to end ‘unnatural poverty’ in a speech covered by BBC News as well as most all of the major news networks. This is a speech I have no recollection of, as one might expect from someone like me who’d thought up until a few years ago that Nelson Mandela had died decades earlier. So while our current history shows that Mandela remained politically active and publicly visible off and on over the past decades, I’ve been unaware of all these activities unless I look them up and read about them and watch them now–which for me is for the first time.
The Case of the Missing Bolton Dinosaur
During this same time period when I was conducting the first surveys about the earliest reported incidences of the Mandela Effect, a town in the United Kingdom noticed it seemed to be missing a dinosaur. A full-scale model of a dinosaur was an oft-mentioned favorite memory from the 1960s for many visitors to the Bolton Museum and Art Gallery, as a January 2006 article in The Bolton News describes–yet as of 2006, there was no longer any official record that any such dinosaur existed. This was a matter of importance to the community, since restoring the old exhibit would have saved the museum the time, effort and energy required to obtain a new dinosaur exhibit in 2000. Alan Rushton, leader of the Conservative group on Bolton Council, said: “One of our dinosaurs is definitely missing! Am I supposed to accept that my eyes deceived me, or this enormous dinosaur was a figment of my imagination? I remember as a schoolboy going on visits to the museum and standing in awe, looking at it. I raised the matter when I was on the arts committee but we were never able to find any trace of it.”
And Anne Wright, also remembered the seeing the dinosaur when visiting the museum, commenting, “I remember a huge dinosaur standing in the entrance to the natural history section. One day I went in and it was no longer there. Later on, when I asked about it, none of the staff could remember anything about it, but I know I saw it. Now nobody seems to know anything about–it’s bizarre.”
About half of those responding to the Bolton News story remembered the dinosaur that now has no official historical record of ever having existed at the museum, and the other half don’t remember any such thing.
What’s Going On?
What I’ve been documenting since 1999 are first-hand reports from people noticing changes in reality all around the world. What I’ve noticed over the years is that these reports of people and things appearing, disappearing, transforming and transporting are the very types of phenomena we’d expect to see on the quantum / microscopic scale of the very, very small–yet they’re happening on a grand scale. People are noticing items such as their socks and keys moving around as if by themselves. People are noticing they remember events differently than siblings and friends. And sometimes people notice they’re disagreeing about what happened moments earlier.
These realizations come forth at the very point in time that humanity enters the new Quantum Age, in which most every field in science now has the word “quantum” in front, including: Quantum Biology, Quantum Cognition, Quantum Cosmology and Quantum Statistics. While quantum logic and phenomena has long been shunted aside as irrelevant (aside from creating nuclear reactors or nuclear weapons), we’re now at the beginning of the “quantum invasion,” as inventors, engineers and scientists strive to be first to build quantum computers.
Amidst this new gold rush of our times, scientists are finding that people such as Quantum Biologist Johnjoe McFadden and Quantum Cognitive Scientist Jerome Busemeyer who I’ve featured on my radio show, Living the Quantum Dream, are leading the way in demonstrating how quantum phenomena are occurring all around us in Nature in our everyday lives.
What is becoming increasingly clear is that as we seek a “theory of everything” unifying the classical and quantum realms, it seems to be finding us. And many of the seemingly bizarre properties of quantum physics appear to be everywhere around and inside us, including occasionally making surprise appearances where we least expect them.
How to Record Alternate History Reports
Since people reading about alternate histories and the Mandela Effect often begin to experience increased incidences of shifts in reality, keeping records of what’s observed becomes important. Questions about alternate histories need to include descriptions of several points in time, that include three points in space and time. Such a journal entry would be recorded to include how, “Today, on date and time Z we are recording that at at date and time Y we became aware that apparently some kind of change had occurred at date and time X involving ____________ being different in these ways __________________.”
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