RADIO INTERVIEW — TAPE #604, SIDE #1
Q: Mark Russell Bell
V: “The Edge of Reality” montage voices
K: Ken Dashow, host of “The Edge of Reality” syndicated weekly radio show
C: commercial spokespersons
W: World Web News Network announcer
S: Sydney Lowe, World Web News Network newscaster
The author of Testament was born with the name Mark Gordon Russell on August 8, 1956 as the identical twin of his brother Michael in Culver City, California not far from MGM studios. Their mother, whose maiden name was Ellen Geraldine King, and father, Paul Ray Russell, soon divorced and the boys moved with Ellen to Pasadena. While in elementary school, Russell experienced several unexplained occurrences that may have contributed to his interest in the ‘paranormal.’ It would be in 1995 when, after discussing the possibility of using a pseudonym for publishing an account of his experiences, the name Mark Russell Bell was channeled through a friend around the time she spotted a displaced Bell telephone book on Sunset Boulevard.
In high school, Bell discovered an innate ability as a journalist when he won a news writing contest sponsored by a local city college. National awards from Scholastic Magazines and the Quill & Scroll National Honor Society were followed by a scholarship to the University of Southern California where he received a B.A. in cinema. Bell began his film industry career as a story analyst and then a position as a Ruth Webb talent agency assistant to actor Mickey Rooney soon led to a job as an agent. After Bell decided to pursue other opportunities, the agency went on to achieve notoriety for specializing in representing the infamous, including John Wayne Bobbitt, Tonya Harding, Joey Buttafuoco and Divine Brown.
After a stint in a public relations firm, Bell became staff writer in the publicity department of Paramount Pictures, the only major studio actually located in the geographical district of Hollywood. He has contributed to publicity campaigns for more than 100 films, including “The Addams Family,” “Braveheart,” “The Butcher’s Wife,” “Clear and Present Danger,” “Coneheads,” “Dead Again,” “Fatal Attraction,” “Fire in the Sky,” “The Firm,” “Forrest Gump,” a couple “Friday the 13th” films, “Ghost,” “The Godfather, Part III,” “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade,” “The Indian in the Cupboard,” “Leap of Faith,” the “Naked Gun” films, “Pet Sematary,” “Scrooged,” several “Star Trek” films, a reissue of “The Ten Commandments,” “U2 Rattle and Hum” and “We’re No Angels.”
While working for Paramount, he wrote in his spare time a book chronicling talking poltergeists throughout history including the Bell Witch, Mary Jobson and Isle of Man cases. Bell eventually learned about a contemporary family experiencing the talking poltergeist phenomena and traveled to rural Oklahoma for interviews. This Bell/Mc Wethy family has been seen on television in the November 1995 ABC special “Ghosts, Mediums, Psychics: Put To The Test” and this footage also aired in the summer of 1996 on “20/20.”
Upon returning home to Los Angeles, Bell decided to continue conducting interviews about the unexplained and turned his attention to Hollywood where “every movie made is a miracle.” When he began transcribing the interview tapes, he was startled to discover electronic voice phenomena (EVP) or ‘spirit messages’ could be heard on the tapes. Bell decided that a documentary-style Q&A/journal format would be the best way to chronicle the surprising events. Researching his ancestry, he found ties with film directors Alfred Hitchcock (“Rebecca,” “Vertigo”) and Ken Russell (“Tommy,” “Altered States”) yet no ancestors with the Bell surname; however, the bell synchronicity culminated with Russell becoming aware he had lived a previous life in Egypt as Bel-Marduk also known as Ra-Ta (Sun-Earth) the priest. Visiting an antique store several blocks from his home in Echo Park, he found an Egyptian pendant with a profile of his exact likeness.
Testament was published on January 9, 1997. The first portion of a follow-up book New Testamnt was published exclusively on the Internet July 20, 1997. Russell comments, “The Angelic Force that has manifested in my life is the same that was known to Nostradamus, used Edgar Cayce as a channel, was referred to as ‘The Mahatmas’ by Madame Blavatsky, and communicated via the Ouija Board to inspire the Messages from Michael books.”
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V: Do not adjust your dial.
V: The real thing. A radio signal from another world.
V: “The Edge —”
V: “— of Reality.”
V: Here again, Ken Dashow.
K: Welcome back to “The Edge of Reality.” I was intrigued by this Email. I am intrigued as we speak. Mark Russell Bell is our guest — author of this huge, huge testament called Testament. Mark, welcome to the show.
Q: Good evening, Ken.
K: Great to have you on board. I’m intrigued by what sent you down this path of wondering about the paranormal in the first place. In your biography, it says that when you were in elementary school that several unexplained occurrences happened to you as a child.
Q: Right. Well first the word ‘paranormal’ gives me pause because we really don’t know what normal is, to begin with. In fact, you mentioned Hanukkah and, of course, Hanukkah can be traced back to an event where some sanctified oil burned not for one day as it was supposed to but for eight days. So where does the paranormal activity stop? What happened to me (“IN”) during my childhood was that when I was five or six — I recently sat down with my mother and I really decided to pin down the date (1961). I heard a disembodied voice calling my name. We were living in Pasadena on Altadena Drive and that was only the first of several unusual events. There was a vaccine or a TB test or something like that and I had a delayed shock and this was in the early ’60s. I was around — between the ages of seven and ten. And after having this vaccine, I passed out. So, of course, at the time they said that this was a delayed shock reaction. (“BUT”) My first memory was something very unusual. It was “The aliens have come back.” And, of course, aliens and UFOs weren’t as prominent in the culture back then as they are now. I do remember seeing one of those episodes of the old “Superman” series with aliens but that was really about all that I can remember. And so that happened. And then I also had — I developed this panic disorder after passing out. Whenever I saw blood or became uncomfortable I was so worried that I was going to pass out that I hyperventilated and passed out. So I also had some sleep paralysis events. (“N”) I think the major event happened then when I was twelve or thirteen. And I have a twin brother named Michael and there was a Life magazine or Look magazine that had an article on the paranormal. So I thought I would imitate it and hold a seance for my brother with my Ouija Board and a candle and a glow-in-the-dark scull from Disneyland. So all I did was say, “I call upon the spirits of the dead” and all of a sudden the roof (“OF THE”) of the apartment building next door blew off and came down upon our apartment building. So that was my first and last seance.
K: Alright, that’ll wake you up.
K: That’s an alarm clock warning.
Q: So then I guess we can flash forward to late 1989 when I was working over at Paramount Pictures, of course known for the famous mountain logo. And this was my (first) job really in the corporate world and —
K: You did publicity for films for Paramount.
Q: Right. Over a hundred Paramount films and a lot of them had paranormal subjects such as “Ghost,” “The Butcher’s Wife,” the “Star Trek” films. But then again everything’s paranormal in some ways so —
K: You know, I was thinking about what you said before. How do you define ‘paranormal’? Well anything that isn’t explainable by the physics that we now know is paranormal. For instance, like oil that should burn for six hours that burns for more than that is paranormal. Hearing, as you said, a disembodied voice. A voice has to emanate from something physical. If you don’t see where it’s emanating from, but you hear it, then it’s paranormal.
Q: The harder question is, “What is normal?”
K: Like I said, normal is something that is easily explainable from physical manifestation. I — you know, if you defy the laws of gravity, it’s paranormal. (“BUT IF”)
Q: In outer space there is no gravity so — I mean, you know, it’s just a matter of where you are.
K: . . . There are different rules I think that apply. Again, I’m not saying — the thing that intrigued me is — you know, about your Email when you talk about in Testament when you say that you have proof —
Q: I have — (“PRO”) right.
K: — of reincarnation. Living before. And that’s a heck of a word to use. That’s a powerful word.
Q: Well I have — I have — basically it’s anecdotal as well as physical since I do have the physical medallion. In fact, the photograph — I don’t know if you saw it there in the book but it’s of that Egyptian medallion in the color photo section.
Q: And I do have these photos on the website too so if any of the listeners want to visit it, it’s at testament —
K: You know, that’s a great idea because there are a lot of cool, crazy — some look ridiculous, some are really kind of wild and wooly. Mark, what is the website?
Q: testament.org and —
Q: You don’t need www but either way you get there so —
K: Right. testament dot O — R — G.
Q: And so just click on Testament the book cover twice and you’ll be at the index and there’s a photos and captions section and that’s where all the photos (are) you’ll see. And as well as other thing(s). The whole book actually is there under “Special Internet Edition.” I wanted —
Q: Yeah, I wanted to be sure that it wasn’t spirituality for sale as you see in so many new consciousness books. So — (“THERE”) for those who don’t have the Internet, you can still order it from the bookstore or whatever. (“BUT”) I did want to make sure all the information was available on the Internet for everyone.
K: Great. I think that’s a great idea. That’s a nice way of doing it.
Q: But when you talked about ‘paranormal’ — when I experienced this series of events, it really made me question just about everything that I had been taught in school because — I don’t know if you saw a special back in 1995 called “Ghosts, Mediums, Psychics: Put To The Test” —
K: No. Were — you were involved with that, wasn’t it?
Q: Well I was somewhat — I wasn’t really involved in it but the family that was depicted in the special I became involved with and, basically, they were my subjects for approximately the first 300 pages of the book. Because when I went to interview them — no, I was working at Paramount at the time.
(TRANSCRIBER’S NOTE: I SHOULD HAVE SAID WORKING “FOR” PARAMOUNT AT THE TIME SINCE I WAS WORKING AT HOME AS AN INDEPENDENT CONTRACTOR AND NOT DOING THE ACTUAL WORK “AT” PARAMOUNT.)
Q: And there were many bizarre events surrounding my going out to meet them. (“I”) Basically I finished (“A”) a book that chronicled talking poltergeists throughout history so I learned all this about previous cases. I guess the best known poltergeists that talked are the Bell Witch case — I don’t know if you’re familiar with these. (“THERE”) There was the Cashen’s Gap case on the Isle of Man involving a so-called talking mongoose that Harry Price wrote about. And then I guess the other one that (“IS THE”) is the most chronicled is the Mary Jobson case which occurred in 1839. And in all these cases, basically, what happened is there was this talking presence and both in the Bell Witch case as well as the case I went out and investigated in Oklahoma, this Spirit was manifesting as an amassing of different spirits and different entities. The family, in fact, thought that they had aliens living with them. And when I was there I did hear some what I thought were alien transmission sounds. But there were some spirit phenomena. There were pennies materializing, a nail bounced off my head and I have all these different interviews in the book, of course.
K: Was anybody else there when these things were happening?
Q: Well for the family this is just their normal life. I mean they were so accustomed to it. It was a family with three daughters and one son. The son had moved out and one of the daughters had moved out. Actually two of the daughters had moved out and there was one still living there. But, (or “BUT”) for example, Brenda Bell — their name is Bell too which was one of the reasons that it caught my attention because, of course, in the Bell Witch case, that was the family Bell as well.
K: Mark, I want you to take a quick break with us.
K: (And when we) come back, I want to talk about the coin that you found that has your likeness in the antique store. We’re talking with Mark Russell Bell. He’s sure he’s lived before and has always been sensitive to these weird things. I’m Ken Dashow. You’re listening to “The Edge of Reality” on the Talk America radio network. Stick around.
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K: Ken Dashow back with you on “The Edge of Reality.” For everybody interested in past lives, coming up in a couple of weeks will be our old friend Dr. Bruce Goldberg — will be joining us about his reincarnation stories. Mark, we go back and forth — Dr. Bruce and I have been on the show for years and years. (He) has interviewed so many children who he talks about who supposedly can talk a foreign language where they have no recollection or idea of what they’re saying and can say specific words or can point to a map and give specific descriptions of things that happened that they have no way of knowing about. That always catches my attention. You know, that always kind of gets me. I tried to be regressed with regressive hypnosis on the air. Nothing. Couldn’t find anything. Nothing doing.
Q: Well hypnosis really is just being very, very relaxed.
Q: I went to see a hypnotherapist and I never really entered a trance myself. But in my case I really don’t have memories from a previous life. It’s just the outside Spirit leading me to the evidence of my past existence and I understand that this happens to other people as well. And, again, it goes back to these hauntings and these talking poltergeists throughout history because, in fact, in Oklahoma they were calling him Michael. That was sort of their nickname for this amassing of spirits. And then, of course, you have the Messages from Michael books and — and I realized after this experience that Edgar Cayce was channeling the same Entity and Madame Blavatsky’s famous ‘Mahatmas’ also was this apparent Entity. So really all of these — this phenomena was interlinked and so, of course, the Angel Mighael in the Bible, of course, was “the Angel who spoke to Moses in the Mount.” And so I guess this God of our world materializes in certain people’s life as a metaphorical manifestation. And, of course, I was working at Paramount so that sort of gives it a little new meaning. And (“SO”) in terms of my name — (“THE”) the Bell name was actually channeled to me through a friend who had never had any kind of channeling experience before. I had been talking to her about if I should have a pseudonym for the book or not. And (“APPA”) she was crossing Sunset Boulevard and she heard “MARK RUSSELL BELL” and then she saw a Pacific (Bell) telephone book on the sidewalk where it should not have been. So I ended up taking that name because it (“WE AA” “IS”) is fairly relevant. And so this Angel Mighael was leading me to buy certain famous antiques — historical antiques. (“SUCH AS A”) A version of the Declaration of Independence and then I found this Egyptian medallion that had my exact likeness. And that morning my horoscope had said “gifts of love.” So I ended up buying that and one other item which looks sort of like the Holy Grail. It was a little Grail cup which I thought was curious. (“AND THEN”) So when I got home I looked up Holy Grail in my encyclopedia — my Columbia Viking Desk Encyclopedia and, sure enough, the description matched almost exactly. (“IT SAID”) Not quite a candy dish and not quite a goblet and this is exactly what the item looked like. So, again, I don’t know if it’s a metaphorical basis or what but the Spirit certainly was manifesting (“THE WW”) in my life the way it had in others’ and I was getting a strong religious message. And, of course, I realized my career in Hollywood had been just disgraceful because here I was getting all this money for all these very superficial fantasy movies which really was keeping — were keeping people from really doing good works and cleaning up the planet and helping others. So I really wanted to give a spiritual message after my experience because (“TH”) the materialism and commercialism of our culture just didn’t mean anything after this (“BIG”) Love I felt after the experience. So, anyway, I have this medallion. I think it’s an Italian knock-off because there was a period there (“WH”) in the ’30s (“WHEN”) they did take Egyptian relics and mass produce them. And I did a continuation of the book on the Internet called New Testament and I put another Egyptian relic on the cover of that which shows an apparent reptilian human being so that’ll get people’s attention hopefully.
K: An interesting idea. Our guest is Mark Russell Bell — lived before. Spirit messages. That kind of stuff. It’s interesting — (throughout the) entire book are transcripts that he has done with supposedly EVPs or Electronic Voice Phenomena. Spirit messages, if you will, on the tapes of the interviews. When we come back, I want to find out who he thinks was talking on those tapes. Was it intentional, accidental; why he believes they actually were messages and not just normal radio leakage which happens in this business all the time. All that plus Dan Aykroyd and “Psi Factor” coming up on “The Edge of Reality” after this.
W: This is the World Web News Network.
S: Condolences are pouring in for six firefighters presumed dead in a Massachusetts warehouse fire. One firehouse in Lawrence has lowered its flags to half-staff. New York firefighters plan to travel to Worcester to pay their respect. NASA scientists are anxiously awaiting a signal from the still-silent Mars Polar Lander. They say the spacecraft was in good shape and on course just before communications ended as expected before Friday’s fiery descent onto Mars. Medical records show Republican presidential candidate John McCain is in good shape despite a bout with skin cancer six years ago. The records also suggest McCain has a normal temper though critics called him volatile. The FBI has arrested two militia members in an alleged plot to blow up a propane plant in Northern California. The suspects are members of a California militia group that has been stockpiling illegal weapons. I’m Sydney Lowe for the World Web News Network.
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