Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin and Sammy Davis Jr – Dancing With The Devil

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Super group Led Zeppelin. Lead guitarist Jimmy Page harboured an intense interest in Aleister Crowley and the Occult.

Magician David Fox investigates…

They say the Devil has all the best tunes – and maybe there is an element of truth in this well-worn cliché. Many of the finest rock acts over the past half century are clearly indebted to the infernal influence of Old Nic himself…

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Sammy Davis Jr was an early member of the Satanic Church.

Would you sell your soul to The Lord of Darkness for temporal gain? The late great Sammy Davis Jr was a celebrity member of the Church of Satan. Founded in 1966 by Anton Szandor Lavey, the legions of Lucifer have boasted several world famous luminaries among their congregation – the most recent being Antichrist Superstar Marilyn Manson!

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Anton Szandor Lavey founded the Church of Satan in 1966.

Indeed, the 1960s heralded a new age of rebellion and decadence. Civil-rights protests, a growing spiritual re-awakening – and of course Rock and Roll music – are defining hallmarks of the era. The Rolling Stones classic ‘Sympathy For The Devil’ controversially portrays the Prince of Evil as the perennially misunderstood anti-hero. The Beatles also chose to include the self-proclaimed Great Beast 666 Aleister Crowley on the cover of their multi-platinum ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ album in 1967.

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The Beatles multi-platinum selling album ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band‘ (1967). Crowley can be seen at the top left.

Led Zeppelin’s lead guitarist Jimmy Page developed a deep interest in the Occult, and most notably Aleister Crowley. The English mystic’s doctrine of Thelema (Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law) seemed to resonate strongly in the mind of the musical genius. Page duly purchased Crowley’s former home – Boleskine House on the banks of Loch Lomond in Scotland.

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Aleister Crowley’s libertarian doctrine of Thelema appealed to musicians such as Jimmy Page, David Bowie and Ozzy Osbourne

The Beast had conducted a complex magical operation at the spacious manor at the turn of the twentieth century known as the Abramelin Ritual. Consequently, it was widely believed to be haunted by ghosts and demons – a terrifying legacy of Crowley’s diabolical dabblings! Curator Malcolm Dent, a close friend of Page who lived at Boleskine for several years, frequently spoke of supernatural phenomena at the residence. Visit link: Malcolm Dent at Boleskine House.

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Jimmy Page at Boleskine House near Loch Ness.

Black Sabbath would define the genre of Heavy Metal with their ground-breaking self-titled album in 1970. Deliciously dark, menacing and sinister, the riff to the title track is played in the spine-tingling tritone of G to C# which incidentally was banned by the Medieval Church for fear of summoning daemonic forces. Bassist Geezer Butler harboured a deep interest in the supernatural, and the lyrical content throughout their best known work reflects his fascination.

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Black Sabbath would define the Heavy Metal genre with thunderous tracks such as NIB, Black Sabbath and Paranoid.

A new wave of heavy metal groups and rock bands from the 1970s onwards continued to explore the darker realms of our existence. From British Black Metal fore-runners Venom, to Los Angeles Thrash legends Slayer, the lyrics became more intriguing, disturbing and down-right shocking. The Devil seemed to be lurking on the periphery at all times, casting his anarchic authority over the proceedings like an ominous orchestral conductor subtly manipulating the creative strings.

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US legendary Thrash Metal band Slayer. Pushed the boundaries throughout the 1980s and 1990s.

In recent years, Rock and Roll music has enjoyed a sensational resurgence and is now appreciated by fans of all generations. Old Nic has been firmly accepted as part of our main-stream culture. Contemporary acts such as Queens of The Stone Age and Royal Blood frequently pay homage to icons such as Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin – politely recognising their common infernal heritage! The Devil clearly works in mysterious ways – but is he really such a fearsome fellow? After all, ‘Lucifer‘ is actually Latin for ‘bringer of light’ or ‘The Son of the Morning Star’.

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The archetype of rebellion. Perhaps the Devil simply represents the belligerent streak which resides in each and every one of us?

The author of the article is David Fox, a professional entertainer and freelance writer who currently resides in the UK.

Visit David’s new website at: www.davidfoxmagician.co.uk or contact him at: email@magician-midlands.co.uk

Abraham Lincoln, JFK and The World Trade Centre – Premonitions of Doom

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Is it possible to predict the future? And how much control do we truly have over our destinies? We have all experienced the often unsettling phenomenon of deja-vu at some point in our lives. Could the hand of fate intervene at critical moments to warn us of impending danger?

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Lord Dufferin, British Ambassador to France, late 19th Century

The 19th century statesman Lord Dufferin was well respected in Victorian high society. Nonetheless, he frequently recounted a chilling brush with death. Whilst staying with a friend in Ireland one stormy evening, Dufferin was alarmed to see the ghost of a hideous demonic figure carrying a coffin outside his bedroom window. The ghoulish face would return to haunt him in his dreams for many years to come.

In the 1890s, whilst acting as British Ambassador, Dufferin was about to step into a lift in a luxurious Parisian hotel. Suddenly, to his horror, he noticed that the lift operator was the very man he had seen all those years ago on that sinister evening in Ireland. He promptly stepped back and refused to enter. A few moments later the cable snapped and the lift plunged several floors – killing everyone inside!

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Who was the strange man Lord Dufferin saw in Ireland and Paris?

A shocked Dufferin made inquiries about the identity of the lift operator. All that was known was that he had started working there that day – but his identity was a mystery. Whoever he was, his sudden appearance had clearly saved the ambassador from certain death.

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President Abraham Lincoln appeared to have dreamed about his own fate.

Unfortunately some are not so fortunate – despite being granted a warning of impending danger. President Abraham Lincoln spoke of a vivid nightmare he had several days prior to his assassination in 1865. In his dream he encountered a group of mourners gathered in The White House. When he asked them who had died, they told him it was the President.

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President Kennedy seemed to have sensed impending danger on the eve of his fateful trip to Dallas.

President John F Kennedy, who would succumb to the same fate as his predecessor, also made an ominous statement which came to pass. Before his fateful trip to Texas in 1963, JFK is reported to have said: ‘if someone wants to shoot me from a window with a rifle, nobody can stop it, so why worry about it?’

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Miraculously, Barrett Taylor avoided attacks on the World Trade Centre in both 1993 and 2001.

The most defining moment of our modern era is arguably the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre, New York, in 2001. Since the atrocity, many people around the world have claimed to have experienced premonitions before the tragedy occurred. However, perhaps the experiences of financial executive Barrett Taylor, who was employed at the Twin Towers, are the most startling.

Taylor twice evaded disaster. In 1993 (the year the World Trade Centre was bombed) he felt a mysterious urge to return home just before the explosion. The same eerie sensation would return to grip him on the morning of September 11th 2001 forcing him again to avoid the Trade Centre! He is not the type of person who believes in the supernatural and fails to comprehend the mysterious ‘force’ which spared him from both atrocities.

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Albert Einstein appreciated the complexities of time itself. Foreseeing the future, as well as time travel, are concepts we must consider.

To date, science can offer no sufficient explanation as to why we experience such premonitions and indications of future threats. Albert Einstein appreciated that time itself is something much more profound and mysterious than we care to imagine. Time is not merely the seconds, minutes and hours which appear on the face of a clock… Could it be that our destiny is in some way pre-arranged and decided before we live our lives?

So, the next time you experience a vivid dream, curious hunch or strange sensation, pay very close attention to it. The hand of fate may be delivering an important message for you…

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The author of the article is David Fox, a professional entertainer and freelance writer based in the UK. For more details about David, please visit: www.davidfoxmagician.co.uk

Do you have any strange stories or experiences you would like to share with us? We would be delighted to hear from you. Please email these to: email@magician-midlands.co.uk

Tutbury Ghost Captured on Film?

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Captured during a photo-shoot in Tutbury, Staffs, is the figure a ghost or supernatural being? Copyright 1993 Brenda Ray.

Who is the mysterious cloaked figure?

The idyllic village of Tutbury, Staffordshire is a popular haunt for day trippers who come to savour its unique charm and famous castle. Mary Queen of Scots was incarcerated here in the 16th century, and it has developed a reputation as one of the most haunted places in the British Isles.

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Appearing only once in a series of shots, the figure represents a peculiar puzzle! Copyright 1993, Brenda Ray.

In 1993 Brenda Ray captured the image of a peculiar cloaked figure in the village whilst conducting a photo shoot. This has since been the subject of much speculation, and the story surrounding the mysterious apparition is truly incredible. Indeed, perhaps at some time in the future, Brenda may decide to publish an account of her extraordinary experiences.

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An award-winning short-story writer, Brenda has been interested in the supernatural since childhood.

The supernatural is a subject which has interested Ms Ray since childhood and often features within her literary work. An award winning author, Brenda has recently published two collections of short stories: ‘The Siren of Salamanca’ (2008) and ‘Gondwanaland’ (2013) to much critical acclaim.

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Humorous, mysterious, thought-provoking and highly entertaining – Brenda’s recent collections of short stories.

As someone who was brought up on a diet of Edgar Allan Poe, HP Lovecraft and Roald Dahl, I could identify and appreciate Brenda’s genius immediately. Haunting, vivid and tantalising, her stories often leave the reader with more questions than answers. After all, there is nothing more mysterious than the unresolved…

For more details about Brenda and her work please visit: Brenda Ray Writes

Visit Brenda’s Amazon Page to obtain copies of her books: Brenda Ray Amazon

David Fox is a professional entertainer and freelance writer based in the UK. Visit his website at: www.davidfoxmagician.co.uk

 

 

Dreams – what do they mean?

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The Moon of the Tarot represents the realm of the subconscious… The realm of dreams….

What are dreams and why do we have them? The ancients believed them to be cryptic communiqués from the Gods. In more recent times, Sigmund Freud held dreams to be revelations of repressed anxieties whilst his student, Carl Jung, considered them to be important messages we can use to resolve problems. They come in a variety of forms: vivid, pleasant, nightmarish, recurring… Here are seven of our most common dreams and their meanings.

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1. Falling

We will all experience the sensation of falling in a dream at least five times in a lifetime. It is agreed that this type of dream is indicative of losing control of a particular aspect of your life. Through the act of falling, we are being subconsciously prompted to reclaim the initiative and organise ourselves better.

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2. Naked in a Public Place

One of the most unpleasant dreams is to find yourself stark naked in a public place! Are you afraid of being found out for making a mistake? Facing up to the situation now and being honest will always gain you respect in the eyes of your peers. This could be daunting, but you won’t be spotted au naturel in dreamland again!

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3. Not Prepared for an Exam

There is nothing worse than not being ready to sit an exam. The dreamer may never even enter the exam room, but the feelings of helplessness are terrifying. Students are being warned to take more responsibility for their studies. The dream may also represent a fear of failure and of new challenges. Remember the mantra: if at first you don’t succeed, try and try again…

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4. Being Chased

Your legs seem to be encased in concrete and whoever (or whatever) is pursing you is gaining ground rapidly… This dream is said to symbolise a refusal to stand up to a particular person, or problem, in your life. Can you identify your pursuer? If so, you will discover the source of your consternation. If you cannot see this threat, you may in fact be running away from an unsavoury aspect of yourself.

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5. Missing a Train, Bus or Plane

In the internet age, we all have hectic schedules and it is normal to miss a transport connection. Dreaming about such a stressful occurrence is commonplace and suggests that you need to think more carefully about your time management. Perhaps your diary is too full and it’s time for a vacation? It could also indicate that you are feeling regret for not seizing an opportunity.

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6. Flying
The feeling is normally exhilarating. Dreamers who recount ‘flying’ during their sleep usually do so positively. This phenomenon reveals that you are attaining new giddy heights in personal development. Be proud of your achievements and continue to reach for the stars. However, if you feel somewhat ‘tethered’ to the ground in your dream, something in waking life may be holding you back.

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7. Dreaming of a Deceased Loved One

When a dearly departed family member or friend pays you a visit during your dream, it should be considered a great blessing. Many cultures believe that this is actually the spirit of the deceased returning to offer reassurance and guidance. The more vivid the dream is, the more details you can draw upon in order to find a solution to a problem.
We hope this short guide will help you unlock the mysteries of your dreams. Why not keep a pen and paper at the side of your bed and write them down on waking? Because, as Shakespeare once said: ‘We are such stuff as dreams are made on.’

The author of the article is David Fox, a professional entertainer based in the UK. David also functions as a freelance writer. His website is: www.davidfoxmagic.co.uk

Do you have any of your own stories you would like to share with us? Send an email to: email@magician-midlands.co.uk

Belmez Faces, Spain – La Casa de las Caras

Since the early 1970s thousands of inquisitive souls have paid a visit to an undistinguished house in Bélmez, Andalusia, Spain. The reason for their peculiar pilgrimage is truly fascinating and represents one of the most sensational supernatural stories of modern times.

The terrifying tale began in August 1971 when Maria Gómez Cámara witnessed what appeared to be a human face mysteriously materialising upon the concrete floor of her kitchen. She was so petrified that her husband and son forcibly removed the menacing visage with tools, and hastily re-concreted the area.

An innocuous house in Andalusia was the site of an incredible supernatural occurrence.

Alarmingly, several days later the same face reappeared. This time it was much more vivid and wore a hauntingly distressed expression. The family began to speculate that some sort of supernatural entity might be at work. News of the phenomenon quickly spread throughout the local community and the Mayor suggested that the flooring be carefully extracted for scientific investigation.

The mysterious happenings in Bélmez attracted international media attention, as well as the interest of scientists, clairvoyants and psychical investigators. More spectral images began to form upon the kitchen floor which further fueled speculation. Indeed, when the room was finally sealed off for investigation, cameras recorded the faces eerily forming upon the concrete by their own accord. An unseen spectral hand seemed to be fashioning the images from out of the ether! Microphones also detected unnerving disembodied voices and unexplained sounds around the house.

Scientists have conducted painstaking research into the strange faces.

Sceptics argue that there must be a logical explanation for the faces and it is merely a highly sophisticated hoax. As a result of the weird occurrences, Bélmez has enjoyed much welcome publicity and an increase in passing trade. The possible presence of a ghost can indeed bring many economic benefits to an otherwise isolated location and motivate the unscrupulous.

The house was built upon a medieval cemetery and clairvoyants believe witchcraft and sorcery was practiced in the area.

Nonetheless, no conclusive explanation has been presented to explain the mystery. One notable parapsychologist has even suggested that Thoughtography (the ability to transfer one’s thoughts onto a solid surface) may have created the images. Furthermore, several clairvoyants who have visited La Casa de las Caras (The House of the Faces) have all cryptically agreed that a tragic event associated with witchcraft occurred there during medieval times. Strangely, workmen who dug beneath the house unearthed the remnants of a cemetery dating back to this period. Could the spectral faces be a desperate message from the other side?

The Casa de Las Caras now functions as a museum. The address is: Calle Maria Gomez, 5, 23568 Bélmez de la Moraleda, Jaén, Spain.

The author of the article is David Fox. A professional entertainer and freelance writer based in the UK. Visit his website at: www.davidfoxmagician.co.uk. Follow on Facebook: www.facebook.com/davidfoxmagician

 

Dion Fortune – Sane Occultism

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‘the material plane, as we see it, is the end result of a long chain of evolutionary processes that have gone on in the subtler planes, the realms of spirit, mind and astral ether’

Dion Fortune, (1890 – 1946) otherwise known as Violet May Firth, continues to cast her formidable influence over seekers of the Old Wisdom. An early practitioner of psychotherapy, Fortune was introduced to The Path through the Theosophical Society during the First World War. Blessed with both powerful intellect and steely volition, she would become one of the most prolific and widely read Occult writers of all time.

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The Qabalah forms the basis of Western Occultism

In 1924 Fortune co-founded the Fraternity of the Inner Light with Charles Loveday. The group continues to function today as The Society of the Inner Light and offers spiritual guidance for those so inclined. Promoting a Christian morality, the order draws from the teachings of the Golden Dawn and utilises the Qabalah as a framework for personal development.

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Like Madame Blavatsky, Dion Fortune claimed to commune with higher entities.

Indeed, like Madame Blavatsky before her, Fortune believed that she had communed with Masters beyond the physical realms who imparted great wisdom and insight. ‘The Cosmic Doctrine’ (eventually published in 1949) provides an explanation of the creation and machinations of the universe itself. The text also reveals the individual’s place and role within the great cosmic schemata.

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‘The Mystical Qabalah’ has long been essential reading for those seeking spiritual guidance.

‘The Mystical Qabalah’ (1935) is arguably Fortune’s tour-de-force and candidly demonstrates her tremendous talents and profound appreciation of the Western Esoteric Tradition.  Regarded as a classic of the esoteric cannon, it is still widely studied throughout the world nearly a century after publication.

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‘Through The Gates of Death’ is an extraordinary text.

Other texts of note include: ‘Through The Gates of Death’ (1930) and ‘Psychic Self Defence’ (1930). The former is an extraordinary exposition of the astral realms and the process we all must face upon shedding this mortal coil. Fortune addresses this subject with tremendous insight and sensitivity. The latter is essential reading for anyone who decides to embark upon the practice of ceremonial magic, or who may suspect they are a victim of psychic attack.

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Fortune’s novels remain highly entertaining and readable.

Like all the great occultists, Fortune understood and appreciated how ancient wisdom can be communicated to students via the medium of art. The author of several novels such as ‘The Winged Bull’ (1935) and ‘The Secrets of Dr Taverner’ (1926), they are still highly entertaining, readable, and contain invaluable pearls of wisdom for us all to absorb and appreciate.

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During the dark years of World War Two, Fortune and her associates used magick to thwart the enemy.

Throughout the dark years of World War Two, Fortune drew upon her immense occult knowledge and magical talents to combat the menace of the Third Reich. Her travails are documented in ‘The Magical Battle of Britain’ ( a collection of letters from the war period advising members of her society on how to assist the nation through powerful visualisation techniques). A proud patriot, much of Fortune’s work is influenced by the rich folklore of the British Isles.

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In the 1940s Fortune struck up a friendship with Aleister Crowley.

During the 1940s Fortune initiated a fruitful correspondence with the Great Beast 666, Aleister Crowley who was now in his twilight years. Indeed, such a relationship between two seemingly diametrically opposed personalities may appear bizarre to the casual observer. However, both Fortune and Crowley appreciated each other’s genius and would later meet in Hastings. Fortune became sympathetic to Crowley’s doctrine of Thelema (Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law) and was sophisticated enough to see beyond the Beast’s notoriety – recognising his exceptional intellect and wisdom.

The Society of the Inner Light’s website provides details of their aims and philosophy: www.innerlight.org.uk

Dion Fortune’s works and rare occult texts can be purchased from Thoth Publications of Loughborough: www.thoth.co.uk Visit their website for an extensive range of titles or contact them for expert advice today.

The author of the article is David Fox, a professional entertainer and freelance writer based in the UK. Visit David’s website for more details now: www.davidfoxmagician.co.uk

Superstition and Football – Bizarre Beliefs of the Beautiful Game

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Zidane is well-known for his curious pre-match rituals

The great Bill Shankly famously stated that football is ‘much more serious’ than a matter of life and death. Perhaps this is the reason why superstition abounds within the realms of the beautiful game. From Zidane and Maradona’s much publicised pre-match rituals, to Johan Cruyff’s charmed chewing gum, footballers the world over are well known for embracing the weird and the wonderful in the hope it will ensure good fortune once the white line is traversed.

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Elland Road was said to be cursed.

Leeds United’s legendary manager Don Revie was renowned for his lucky blue suit and superstitious nature. However, on receiving a letter from a gypsy in 1971, Revie decided to take things a stage further. The author insisted that Elland Road (Leeds’ stadium) was cursed as a group of gypsies had been forced off the land prior to its construction. Suffering from an unexpected loss of form at the time and dropping points, the manager duly invited a gypsy to the stadium in order to remove the curse. ‘Now you’ll start winning things’ she said after conducting a peculiar ritual on the pitch. Leeds would subsequently go on to produce some of the finest displays of Revie’s tenure and secure three more major trophies. Did the gypsy work her magic, or was it merely coincidental?

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Bela Gutman. Did he curse Benfica?

Perhaps Portuguese giants Benfica should take note of Revie’s faith in the supernatural. In the early 1960s the club was a major superpower and won the European Cup twice under the management of the mythical Bela Guttman. However, after achieving such incredible success, the Hungarian impresario was incandescent when the board denied him a pay rise. On leaving the club, he angrily proclaimed that Benfica would not win another European trophy for one hundred years. To date, the Portuguese side have been losers in eight major finals. Many Benfica fans now firmly believe that their club has been cursed.

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The great Pelé insisted his lucky shirt be found and returned

Even items of clothing take on mystical properties in the high pressure world of professional football. The sensational Pelé’s dramatic decline in form over several matches during the mid 1960s was attributed to the loss of his ‘lucky shirt’. The Brazilian master had kindly presented this to an adoring Santos supporter after a match. A close friend was hastily called upon to track down the special jersey. On its return, Pelé felt rejuvenated and his genius swiftly reappeared. Little did he know that his concerned companion had committed an act of chicanery by procuring another used shirt and pretending it was the lucky one!

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England Captain Bobby Moore

England’s World Cup winning captain Bobby Moore always insisted on being the last player in the changing room to put on his shorts, whilst striker Gary Lineker requested a shirt change at half time if he had yet to find the net. Both players boast a combined total of 188 international caps between them, so perhaps there really is a mysterious link between superstition and success?

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Raymond Domenech openly declared his belief in astrology.

Nonetheless, no matter how much footballers may be willing to embrace the irrational to win matches, they clearly do have their boundaries, as French international manager Raymond Domenech discovered. His reliance on astrology when selecting which players to include in his squad frequently attracted ridicule. The dramatic fall out between Domenech and his team at the 2010 World Cup finals ultimately lost him his job. Another international manager who would fall foul to sceptics was Glenn Hoddle. His policy of calling upon the services of faith-healer Eileen Drewery (who had assisted him with a knee injury as a young player) left him open to scathing criticism.

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Kolo Touré insisted on being the last man out.

Touching wood, putting a right boot on first and sporting a lucky charm are all common-place superstitions. Indeed, the same habits will be repeated in dressing rooms across the land throughout the highs and lows of the footballing season. One such belief, strangely held by many players, is that they will have a good game if they are the last man out of the dressing room. Arsenal defender Kolo Touré took this to the extreme during his side’s 2009 Champions League clash with Roma. Team-mate William Gallas was receiving treatment at half time and Touré insisted on waiting until this was finished. His obstinance resulted in Arsenal starting the second half with nine men and him receiving a yellow card for entering the field of play late without the referee’s permission. Fortunately for Touré, Arsenal finished 1 – 0 winners.

Do you have any strange superstitions or unusual stories you would like to share? Why not email them to us at: email@magician-midlands.co.uk

The author of the article is David Fox a professional entertainer and freelance writer based in the UK. For more about David, visit his website at:

www.magician-midlands.co.uk

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