From the author of 'Sacred Evil' and 'Beloved Witch' comes a chilling new collection of real-life stories. Ipsita Roy Chakraverti, practising Wiccan, tells tales of the spirit, the unknown, the supernatural, based on true encounters. An ageing actress gets obsessed with a mannequin replica of herself. A grieving husband tries to call up his wife's spirit. A young woman haunts a famous hotel in Puri. These are stories that will leave you feeling unsettled, disturbed, intrigued; stories that seem to come from another time. Author Ipsita Roy Chakraverti joined IBNLive readers for an interaction on her book 'Spirits I Have Known'.
Q. Instilling fear is the key to unnerve a person. This is the one leading to witchcraft and getting devilish spirits to supposedly act against opponents. Are you in support of such an cation? Asked by: sundar1950in
A. Wicca has always stood for knowledge, strength and women's empowerment. That was the original Wicca. The distortions came later instigated by organized religion or by a male dominated society. Instilling fear was never one of the motives. Maybe fear of Wicca was drummed into people in order to satisfy various lobbies with vested interests.
Q. Some people wake up in the night from deep sleep in a shock during night, is this a spirit influence? What should one do? Asked by: Deepak
A. One can wake up either with indigestion - or in rare cases, with spirit disturbance! One should keep a cool head and be unafraid. Remember, nothing can harm you if you are strong. Drink a glass of water anyhow!
Q. 'Spirits I Have Known'- real life stories - will this come under Fiction or non-fiction classifications? Asked by: sundar1950in
A. These are real life incidents from my case files where names and places have been masked to protect identities.
Q. Real life stories on Spirits. These are the Holy ones or the unholy ones? Asked by: sundar1950in
A. Sometimes there is very little difference between the two!
Q. You speak of women empowerment. In the current scenario of uncontrolled crime towards women in Bengal, how can you help? Asked by: Aparna
A. Maybe those in power need the real empowerment and realization about how the people are suffering. Our women are doing all that they can and are fighting back against atrocities and injustice. I salute them.
Q. Is the price of the book also likely to leave us unsettled, disturbed,
intrigued? Asked by: sundar1950in
A. Ask my publisher that question !
Q. Is Tantrik practiced with the help of evil spirits. Any research at any university on this? Asked by: sundar1950in
A. In Europe, between the 11th and 17th centuries, more than 8 million women were killed for being "witches". In India, witch-hunting still continues. The word "witchcraft" is used as a handle in our country to commit atrocities against women. Unfortunately, our masses are vulnerable to superstition and what is told them by their netas. The original dakinividya is very much a part of ancient religions like Buddhism.
Q. Is this true that spirits can enter people's body and make them do task that these people might have not done otherwise? Asked by: Sneha
A. There is such a phenomenon as "walk-in" spirits who can take temporary possession of a person. Modern day psychoanalysis acknowledges this also.
Q. Why do you like haunting people the Evil,Witch and spirits? Asked by: sundar1950in
A. It gives me great joy !
Q. Does spirits exist? Asked by: Punam
A. Today, modern science acknowledges spirits just as our ancient mystics said that the body cannot exist without consciousness. Sri Aurobindo, Swami Abhedananda, all believed in the afterlife. Today, modern physicists like Heinemann (of NASA) are writing about spirits manifesting in photographs.
Q. Do spells really work? Asked by: Asha
A. Spells, chants and mantras are all the same instruments in order to focus the mind and invoke the higher energies. The main thing is the will of the practitioner.
Q. Are there witches in Kolkata? Asked by: Aparna
A. Don't you see the brooms whizzing around town?!
Q. How do we help spirits move on from this plane to reincarnation? Assuming that you believe in reincarnation. Asked by: Shilpa
A. If you have read my first book 'Beloved Witch', you will know my views on reincarnation. The soul survives physical death and comes back if there is unfinished business. Otherwise, it can exist in any dimension, including the one we physically live in. We can help spirits move on through out prayers and our communication with them. Also, they will move on of their own when the time is right.
Q. Wicca is known for its community-based work. What community work do you currently do and how can we help? Asked by: Shilpa
A. When I started my Wiccan Brigade in 2006, it was not only to spread the true knowledge but it was to bring back old values which are now increasingly deteriorating in society. I think our youth is being helped through this kind of work and understanding.
Q. Are witches and spirits always evil? Asked by: Jyoti
A. No witches are not evil. Maybe they are a bit mischievous - look at me !I like to have my fun with those who deserve no better.
Q. There was a mention of Edison's instrument. Can a layperson create and use this instrument to connect with the spirit world? Asked by: Shilpa
A. I think a layperson can use some of the components of the machine even if not the actual box which was believed to have been designed by Edison. Apart from that, I think the focus and intent of the person operating the components are important. Further, the spirit concerned must want to communicate.
Q. Isn't there you can find ways to make the politicians in this country more sensitive and progressive? There has to be some larger change your beliefs and powers can contribute to? Asked by: Ahalya
A. If you have read my first book 'Beloved Witch', you will know that I have worked with people occupying so-called "hot seats". Some times I have made their position even hotter. But then, that's what they deserve. I think the changes can come not from them, but from the masses and people like us who still refuse to bow down to corruption and injustice.
Q. How to differentiate whether its a psychological problem with a person or its a spirit/witch influence? Asked by: gaurav
A. How can I answer you when you don't differentiate between a spirit and a witch?!
Q. How a witch different from a normal person? Asked by: gaurav
A witch is super-normal, like super-woman!
Q. Can Wicca teach women self defense? Asked by: Aparna
A. Wicca can teach women self-defence in that it can make the psychic and mental powers stronger. Wiccans have also sometimes been called rebels by a male dominated society. They refuse to any form of injustice quietly. Maybe it is a core of strength within them.
Q. What is a spirit and who is a witch? Asked by: gaurav
A. For the first, read 'Spirits I Have Known' and for the second, read 'Beloved Witch'!
Q. Given an opportunity to make a movie , would you direct a Horror Movie or a Love Story and who would be the leading actors in your cast? Asked by: Tanveer Mohammad Masood
A. I'd make a horror story starring Manmohan Singh and Katrina Kaif! Now, would you call that love or horror?
Q. How are witches created? What happens after death? Asked by: Jyoti
A. "Bad" witches are created in fairy stories written by men. "Good" witches are created by me in the Wiccan Brigade!
Q. Why are people scared of witchcraft? Asked by: Aparna
A. People are scared of witchcraft because of the way the word and the subject have been distorted through the years. The original witchcraft was a superior form of learning and women's empowerment. It can go back nearly 25000 years when man first started worshiping the elements. It goes back to the time when man first worshiped the Mother Goddess. But with the coming of organized religion and a patriarchal society, women were given a back seat. Between the 11th and 17th centuries in Europe, the witch trials killed nearly 8 million women. In India today, witch-hunts still continue.
Q. You have mentioned a chant in one of your stories. Can I use it if I feel threatened? Asked by: Aparna
A. Yes, you can certainly use it. It will benefit you.
Q. Does witches have special powers from birth? Asked by: Aparna
A. We all have special powers. A witch or a Wiccan recognizes them.
Q. What is moksha in Wiccan? Asked by: gaurav
A. Moksha is feeling free and strong - whether you are in this dimension or the next.
Q. Don't you think witch is evil and we should keep our faith on God to defeat the evil designs of witches? Asked by: Tanveer Mohammad Masood
A. In that case, you should be careful what you ask me ! If you ask me, "evil" is what is happening to our women in the country today. I as a witch am trying to fight for these women. Now tell me. Who is evil?
Q. Do give info about 'Wiccan Brigade' and what it does? How to learn Wicca? Asked by: Aparna
A. Look up www.thewiccanbrigade. That will give you the details.