A father watches his teenage son step out the door on a hiking trip, not knowing that this is the last time he would see him…. A journal of grief, despair, and ultimately, hope, this book tells the story of every parent’s nightmare–the sudden death of a child–and a father’s search for meaning in a seemingly random world of psychics and skeptics. Expanding on territory covered in his 2008 memoir of his son’s death Soul Shift, Messages from the Afterlife is both an account of Ireland’s journey from indifference to belief and an overview of the resources available to the bereaved to help them receive messages from the afterlife.
Mark Ireland, son of celebrated “psychic to the stars” Dr. Richard Ireland, was a successful marketing executive in Arizona with little interest in his father’s colorful history. While his father held readings for Mae West and traveled the U.S. demonstrating his parapsychological powers, Mark Ireland took a more conventional route through life. But when his own teenage son Brandon suddenly dies while hiking in the mountains with friends, Ireland is forced to confront his resistance to all things spiritual and begins to explore the possibility that communication with the dead is real.
In his search for conclusive evidence of life after death, he plunges into his father’s world and meets an array of respected psychic-mediums who deliver unexpected messages not only from his son in the afterlife but also from many other souls seeking to communicate with the living. Fighting to retain a sense of critical thinking, Ireland also contacts scientists conducting research into the survival of consciousness after death. The book features detailed accounts of tests and experiments that various people have conducted to obtain proof of consciousness survival, including Ireland’s own, involving a secret message left behind by his sister, Robin, who died of pancreatic cancer. The contents of this message were unknown to any living person and remained sealed in an envelope–untouched–until responses had been received from a group of qualified mediums who sought to “crack” the code. Messages from the Afterlife shows how spirit communication can be both undeniably accurate and frustratingly ambiguous, and above all demonstrates the value of having an open, receptive mind while maintaining faith in the indestructiblity of the human spirit.