Grief 2 Growth Podcast- Lionel Friedberg- Forever In My Veins- How African Shamanism Shaped My Life

Grab some popcorn and get ready to be entertained. Lionel Friedberg is a man who has lived a full and adventurous life. We could hardly do it justice in this short format. But, we took a good shot at it.

Lionel was born in South Africa. As a white boy growing up during apartheid, at an early age, he was introduced to African shamanism and it made a lifelong impression on him.

As a young man, a Black friend took Lionel to see a sangoma, a medicine woman. This woman told Lionel about what awaited him in life decades in the future. Today, nearly 60 years later her prophecies are still coming true.

Lionel’s adventures would take him around the world and back to South Africa to seek healing for the illness she would come to him.

In this interview, we discuss his adventures and what he has learned about the nature of reality including how our ancestors are parts of our lives, shamanic prophecy, energy healing, exorcism, near-death experiences, even UFOs.

Lionel’s book is available at:






Brian Smith 0:00
Close your eyes and imagine what if the things in life to cause us the greatest pain, the things that bring us grief, or challenges, challenges designed to help us grow to ultimately become what we were always meant to be. We feel like we’ve been buried. But what if, like a seed had been planted, and having been planted, who grow to become a mighty tree. Now, open your eyes. Open your eyes to this way of viewing life. Come with me as we explore your true, infinite, eternal nature. This is brief to growth. And I am your host, Brian Smith. Hey, everybody, I want to do a real quick introduction to this episode with Lionel Friedman. Lionel has lived a long and adventurous life. So we do talk quite a bit about details of his life in the beginning of the episode. And towards the end, we get more into general topics. So I do encourage you to stick around for the entire episode. It’s really good. It’s all fascinating. He’s lived an amazing life. The book is incredible. If you like movies, if you like adventures, and I do recommend you get the book. But stick around for the interview. And as I said, if you can stay till the end, have a great one. Hey, everybody, this is Brian and back with another episode of grief to growth and today I’ve got with me Lionel freedberg. Lionel has written a fascinating book about about his life. And we’re going to discuss his book today. I’m going to read his bio and then we’re gonna go ahead and cover have a conversation. Lionel is an award winning Emmy Award winning producer in New York Times bestselling author. He spent 50 years making films as diverse as full length theater, theatrical features and television documentaries. And he grew up in South Africa during the during the apartheid era era. And he began his career during the dying days of colonialism in Central Africa, and Lionel eventually settled in Los Angeles where his work took him to the sound stages of Hollywood and to the most remote regions of the earth. In his career expose them to extraordinary wonders of our planet. They brought him into close contact with many unforgettable personalities which he outlines in his books, from Maverick scientists to politicians, entertainers, and to people who survived near death experiences. Now, the reason I want to talk to Lionel day is his observations have taught him that life is far more complex and infinitely stranger than we can imagine. He was struck by a life unexpected life threatening illness. And in his efforts to find a way to save his life. They took him back to Africa, where he encountered the age old rituals and powerful healing methods of a lot of African shamans and their mysterious ways have much to teach us Lionel believes and are as relevant today as they were in ancient times. So with that, I want to welcome Lionel freeburg. And mine I should have asked you before we started my pronounce your name correctly.

Lionel Friedberg 2:59
Yeah, you gotta spit on Lionel freedberg is exactly right. Thank you.

Brian Smith 3:03
Why don’t I really, it’s great to have you here today. And I’m really looking forward to your interview. And I was telling you before I get started, there’s so much in your book and so much about your life. I’m not sure how much we can get through. But well, we’ll do our best. So if you could just briefly tell me like you’re you’re raised in South Africa. And tell me about you know, a little bit about your background.

Lionel Friedberg 3:25
Yeah, I regard myself as and I don’t mean to sound boastful or arrogant about this in any way at all. But I think I’ve been extraordinarily fortunate. I’ve been blessed with an amazingly fascinating life. And it began, you know, I was an only child living in South Africa. I was born in the just after the after the Second World War, I’m now 76 years old. And so I grew up there, went to school there and grew up in the midst of that apartheid system, that divisive iniquitous system. That was really very difficult. Even as a child it was, it was obvious to me that there was something grossly wrong with the way we were living our lives. We were privileged white society. We all had black servants in our homes. And the twain never met between white and black society. And it was very clear to me that this wasn’t right. We all had sevens in our homes. And you know, I had a nanny as well. And why I say that is because very, very early on in my in my childhood, I must have been about five or six years old. My I had a wonderful nanny. And one day she had a day off. And because I was an only child, she said to me, I’m going to see a friend this afternoon. You want to come with me? So I said sure. Absolutely. And so we went down the road in this little town where we were living place called Kempton Park, which is to the east of Johannesburg, with a big international airport is now Oliver Tambo International Airport and Named after one of the heroes of the of the struggle in the in the apartheid system, and, and we went down down the road to see to see her friend who was also a black woman working in a white household. And these people had tiny little facilities in the in the backyards of these of these houses a little tiny, miniscule room, a little cold shower and a toilet. And that was it. That was the all of these people had. Our seven had that and so did this, this other woman that we were going to visit her friend, you know, and I was, I was she always used to sing lullabies to me, and you know, she used to tell me stories, basically, based on on tribal lore, and I found that all very fascinating, and I love this woman. And she said, Come and visit my friends. So of course, I was very keen to do that. And we went down the road. And when we got to this little room at the back of this yard where her friend lived, they were like, maybe two or three other people standing outside the door waiting to see her. And, you know, so my nanny said to me, uh, you know, she’s obviously she’s seeing, she’s seeing some people. So I said, Why can’t we go in? And she said, No, no, no, no, she’s, she’s, she’s being she’s being a doctor. She’s just being a doctor. You know, what did I understand? It’s six years, right? This is a woman who polished the floors, clean them, you know, cleaned the kitchen, cook the food, how can she be a doctor? And she says, Yeah, she’s being a doctor. So I thought, What do you mean? And she said, Well, when we go inside a room shall show you. And sure enough, when after these two people had been inside the room and came out it’ll carry little sexuals something inside it, I didn’t know what they were, we went in there. And in this little room, which was very Spartan, there was a bed of course and a little little stove which you could cook off with Primus stove, you know, use parafin it had one electric naked electric light bulb in the roof. And often these lights didn’t even work I mean, these people often use candles. It was it was it was an unbelievable period of time. But anyway, on in her room where all these shows and on the shelves are little containers, little bottles and jars and stuff and there was all sorts of strange things inside there that I did not recognize obviously herbs sands, you know grains of stuff, little feathers, a couple of animal skins and whatever else and I I was intrigued by all of this. So my nanny said to her, tell him what you do here you know when you’re not working inside when you when you have your day off, what do you do get tell tell him and so she explained to me she said well, I have learnt in my tribe when I grew up there how to become a sangoma The first time I ever heard the word sangoma. sangoma is the word. It’s a Zulu word originally, but it’s now used by all the tribes By the way, there are 11 languages and different tribal groups in South Africa. But they all all the shamans go by the name of sangoma, that’s the sort of, you know,

generic name for these folks. And she explained to me that what she did was she could help heal people. And the way she did that was to read the bones. And I said, What do you mean, read the bones, and she had a little grass match in the middle of her room on the concrete floor. And on this grass mat was a little animal skin bag. And she took it, she shook it like this, and it was you know, clinking sound inside, and she said, inside, here are my bones. And I said, Show me and she said, Sure, and she turned the bag upside down. And what fell out were a bunch of various bones, a few stones, pebbles, and other trinkets in there. These were the tools the medium by which she could speak to her ancestors. Now one thing we have to realize about the healing paradigm, in the African tradition is very much centered on contact with the ancestors, the ancestral spirits, the ancestors are the ones who will guide teach, diagnose prognose see into the future, and also do all sorts of other amazing things with with the sangoma. So the sangoma looks at the bones and they come from various animals, some of them have to come from certain animals, like a goat Hina, a lion, crocodile even as little leaving the crocodile tooth, in the end and all of these sets of bones of all the shamans, all the sangomas that I’ve ever met, they all have these specific objects, but then they can all add their own little individual bits and pieces to it, as in when they feel fit. Whatever speaks to them, or allows them to contact their ancestral spirits is what they use in these bones. And the way the bones fall on this little grass mat, apparently is, is influenced by the ancestors. Instead of the way these bones for upside down left to right, whatever else, one on top of the other means something very specific. And these people can read that. So she was trying to explain all this to me. I mean, I was lost. It sounded like a like a high adventure to me was fantastic. And I thought, wow, not the whites, of course went cold. These people I knew that they existed, they would call them witch doctors, which was a derogatory term, right? And totally incorrect because there’s nothing to do with witches about this. But you know, they were all weird by the term of witch doctor, but they really they were sangomas, they were herbalist. They were diviners, they were clairvoyance, they could do all kinds of things. And the other thing that they did, and they did it remarkably well, because I’ve even had experience of this myself, which we can get to in a moment. And that is that they knew I don’t know how to go into the natural world, and pick leaves, and, you know, herbs and whatever else from the environment, in order to make medications to help people heal. And so that’s what all these little bottles and jars and powders were for. And that’s what these people obviously were carrying out when I was waiting outside her room. And so I found was really intriguing. Anyway, you know, my friends spend a lot of time they will yakking away in the language that I didn’t understand. None of us white kids were taught any black languages at all, we learn two languages with English and Afrikaans. And everyone had to learn those two languages, including all the black folk. But did we learn any black languages? No, absolutely not, not back in those days, not during the apartheid era, things are different enough. It’s all a very different country today. But anyway, you know, so I, I paint that picture because that was my first introduction into the healing paradigm of Africa, which I now have had extensive experience of, and it has been an extraordinary journey for me. I think that I have learned more from those folks than I have from anyone else. And believe me, I don’t want to sound boastful again, I’ve made movies with a ton of different people all over the world, from universities to you know, you name it, I’ve worked with NASA, I’ve been, you know, all sorts of exciting places. But I’ve learned more from some of the people who live in mud huts in the middle of nowhere, who don’t even speak English, about how one can develop a relationship with the natural world, how you can tune into the higher realm of, of thinking, raising one’s consciousness, and learning a lot about life and healing yourself. Through folks like that. It has been amazing. Now, let me just jump forward ahead a little bit, comes the year 1960. I finished my education, I’m done with school, high school is done, everything is finished. My father who was originally immigrant from Latvia, he married a South African woman and I wasn’t their only child. My father decided to leave the country because apartheid was really very, very, he founded an immortal system could not live with it. And you know, he’d seen life elsewhere in the world. He was originally from Europe. And he said to my mother, you know, I think it’s time we get out of here. This is just not the way otherwise we shouldn’t bring up a kid in a situation like this.

And so he took a job at a store, by trade, he was a watchmaker, which he learned in Europe, in Latvia, you know, tinkering. In the days when watches had coiled springs and little neck mechanical parts, you know, I have a watch like that, in tribute to my dad, I don’t wear an electronic watch. You got to either wind it up, you know, or our I don’t use it, watch anyway. So that’s what my dad did. And he took a job and a small store where he could be a watchmaker in what was then known as I’m sorry about the fire brigade in the background, but anyway, in an area that was known as Northern Rhodesia, now, Northern Rhodesia was basically two countries north of where we were, a country directly above us was north of South Africa was at that time called Southern Rhodesia, named after Cecil Rhodes, one of the Great British Empire builders, you know, land grabbers in a world, although his legacy did spawn the Rhodes scholarships, a year and a half to give the guy credit. Yeah, the red scholarship is named after him because the guy made a fortune out of gold and diamonds, you know. And so Southern Rhodesia was was one territory. It was British, a British colony, and to the north of that was Northern Rhodesia. And that’s where my dad got this job in this little tiny mining town where they mined copper. Copper had was was was in a very big commodity those days and you know, fetch the big price. It’s not so much today, but those days couple was a was a really important commodity using all kinds of stuff, particularly after the war. They used it and all sorts of you know, machines and war machines and whatever else So it was a very, very wealthy area, way up in the northern part of Northern Rhodesia, right on the border of the Belgian Congo, today, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, but those days, it was still the Belgian Congo. And that was the that Belgian gave Congo independence. And it was the beginning of a war that has never ended, ever since that had that event happened. You know, there was complete chaos, after the Belgians just, you know, through the Congo away, without having really prepared anybody for independence. And of course, there was a lot of the Congo became a pawn in the Cold War, because the Congo was, was and still is, to this day, extremely rich and raw materials. The uranium that was used in the bonds that were dropped on Nagasaki, and Hiroshima, actually came from the Congo. And I know folks know that I mean, that’s the Congo has every kind of natural wealth that you can, you can imagine, comes out of the ground in the Congo. So it became a porn between East and West. And both sides were playing against one another within the Congo and this inflame this war that began in the Congo. And it was at that time that my dad decides to go north, to live in the country directly on the border of this country that’s in chaos. But it was okay because Northern Rhodesia was peaceful and quiet because it was the British territory. And so he went up there, and I have to just say this to to to your viewers. Because it’s an important commodity in my story, my always love the movies, I praise and think my mom, to the end of my days, for having dragged me to every film that she ever went to see ever since I was like four years old, because I love the movies. And so my passion, right from the get go, was I wanted to eventually get to Hollywood, and make Hollywood movies as a kid. So when I was 11, a cousin of mine gave me an old used movie camera. Now these were long before the days of video, of course, we’re using we’re talking about film now. We’re gonna eight millimeter film. So he gave me that. And as a kid, you know, from 11 years old onwards, I was making films for my school, sporting events, birthday parties, stuff like that, you know. And I even made an epic called the glory of the garden, because my mother was an avid gardener. And I use, you know, hollywood music in the movie and all kinds of stuff. So I love the movies. And what I really wanted to do some of my favorite films of those days, were all the Tarzan movies, the adventure films, the African Queen, King Solomon’s minds, all those wonderful stories about Africa, you know,

because Africa is a place of unbelievable adventure, you know, the horizons are endless. There is so much, especially those days that were that were not known about the continent. It was a place of mystery, and Mystique, and, you know, adventure. Wow, said, My folks are gonna live in an area like that. I’m gonna take my camera, I ain’t gonna go to university, which my parents said, that’s what you should do gonna get a life. I said, No, I’m coming with you. I’m getting up to Northern Rhodesia with you guys. Because I want to make movies up there. I mean, not having a clue how I was going to do that. But that was my vision. So anyway, I went out when we got up there. I was, I was horrified because all they was was a copper mine and account. And the bush from horizon to horizon was just, you know, thick Bush, and nothing else. And I thought, What have I done, you know, what am I going to do here? And there were a string of these little copper mines. And there was a local newspaper. And after a couple of months, I looked in the newspaper one day, and there was a little tiny ad in the newspaper, which announced we’re looking for staff for a new television station that was being built in one of these towns. For me, it was like, heaven had heard my prayers. I thought, Oh, my, I got to get a job at this place. And I went and had an interview. That of course, they weren’t looking for, you know, super technicians and producers. All those folks were being brought in from Europe and from the UK. But they were looking for local people like drivers and people to work menial jobs in the station. Right? And I said, I will pay you guys I don’t care what job it is, but I got to work here. So they gave me a job and I started working before they even went on the air. I helped them you know, piece the whole place together, put it all together. And here was this tiny station, which eventually went on the air. I can never forget the date because it was like the beginning of my life. The 15th of December 1961 we went on the air And it was an amazing experience for me because for the next three years what we did was this. In the mornings, we would do educational broadcasts for local vernacular. speaking people, local tribes, in the vernacular languages, the main language in Zambia, in that part of the country is Bemba. And in the afternoons we would do a, what they would call cultural programming for for adults, people who are living in the bush uniform for the various tribal communities. So we would have these groups of people arriving in the afternoon in their tribal regalia and drums and skirts and musical instruments, and they would dance and play music. And it was like being in another world. It was amazing. And then and then at night, we’d have Leave it to Beaver, and Bonanza. And everything that you guys were seeing here in the States, so I was living in this dual world. Yeah, it was incredible. Yeah, anyway, To cut a long story short, when Northern Rhodesia was given its independence by Britain, which was happening at that time, Britain was giving up all its colonies, it was the end of the colonial period. And I discussed that whole episode in some detail in my book as to you know, what that really meant and how it was.

But one day, I was the oldest all the staff at the station, of course, needless to say, we’re white. But one day, after we had become independent, the country became independent, and became the Republic of Zambia, under a black government. We guys at the station all got a pink slip to say that the station has been nationalized by by the government, and you have all done a wonderful job, thank you very much. But in six months, time, bye bye. Out of here, your jobs are going to be taken over by local people. None of us argued with that idea, because it made perfect sense. The country was not independent. It had a right to run itself. And it had it we fully understood why they wanted to stuff this place with local black people, Zambians. But the big problem was, what was that? What was I going to do with my life? You know, where would I go now? The others could go back to Europe and wherever else they came from, you know, but what was I going to do? My dream was to get to Hollywood. Now, how do you do that? When you’re living in the middle of Africa? And you know, you haven’t really got a background? How is how what am I gonna do with my with my life. And so we had a guy working for us, a wonderful black guy who wasn’t much older than me. His name was David fury. He was also a member of the bimber ethnic group. And the next morning, I after I and I got back from the station late that night with his little sister, telling me Thanks very much, but you know, you gotta leave in six months. The next morning, I said to him, and he and I were really good buddies. He loved photography. We gave him a camera for Christmas one year. And, you know, we used he used to spend his time talking to me about photography all the time. Eventually, he wanted to open his own photographic studio. So he and I had a lot in common. And I said, David, you know, I don’t know what to do. Because I’ve been fired. I’ve been basically told to leave the station. Oh, no, no, he said, Why? And I said, well, because my job is going to be taken over by one of you guys, and what but what am I going to do with my life? And he said, Oh, and he thought about this. And he said, you want to go back to South Africa, I did not want to get back to South Africa. Even though there was a thriving film industry in South Africa, I didn’t want to go back to that whole apartheid. And this we talking about 1964 65. Now, I didn’t want to do that. And I said, I don’t know what to do. And he said, Well, I will try and find someone who may be able to help you. I said, like what, you know, like, who is who’s gonna tell me what to do, you know? And he said, just stick it out, find someone. The next day came back and he said, okay, on Thursday, or whatever day it was, we’re going to drive into the bush. And I’m going to introduce you to somebody, and that person will tell you about your future. And I, I gave, I trusted the guy implicitly I said, Okay, whatever you say, David, whatever you say, I’ll do exactly what it’s so. So the day came and they were going along in my little secondhand VW Beetle, driving along this dirt road on the outskirts of a town called and Dola. To this little settlement, little sort of tribal settlement about maybe a few miles in the bush, and on the edge of the settlement was one single house, little tiny house all on its own. And David said, I think that’s the place there. Let’s go there. So we went there, and he knocked on the door. And this little old lady came to the door. It was a hot day as it always is in that part of the world. But she was covered up she had like a trench coat on and up and you know, a rug around her shoulders. She, she was like half blind, she was old, wrinkled, and old and very, very short.

One of the things about her that that that struck me festivals is that she was an OBE No, you know, sometimes there’s a skin pigment problem, and the skin doesn’t go entirely black. And it’s kind of more white than black. Sometimes people like that regarded as freaks in the sort of, you know, not like by the tribe, but she was highly respected, because they said that she had special powers. She was chosen because of her power. And that was the sign of her powers. Well, we went inside her little house, and she brought us into this little room. And the minute I walked into that room, there was some kind of resonance about my childhood because the smells and the things that I saw in that room reminded me of my childhood, the day I went into my nanny’s friend’s room, in that count, way, way back, because there was a grass mat on the floor, there was a little egg sitting on that grass mat. And there were shelves with little bottles and containers of all sorts of weird things that I didn’t recognize on the shelf. So I knew Ah, she does what that woman did, way, way back. This is going to be very interesting. So a long, kind of long story short, she spoke no English, but thank goodness for David, he translated everything for me. She made us sit down, she said, blow into the bag, which I did, and say your name, which I did. And then she took some snuff, which is ground up tobacco powder, you know, tobacco leaves, and she put it in there, that’s an offering to the spirits. She shook the bag like this. And then she turned it upside down. And all of these bones and stones and little things fell on the grass mat. And she leaned over it like this, and she looked and suddenly she went like this. She said, I can’t see anything. It’s too bright. You know, I can shock and I thought, Oh, my God, you know what’s happened? And she says to David, she said, Why? Why am I why are all these bright lights shining at me? What What am I looking at? She didn’t understand what she was seeing. But she was seeing lights, obviously another attendee, this woman was half blind, her eyes was like, you know, ancient. And yet, you could see that she was struggling to see because of some kind of whatever it was, that she was seeing in the bones. And David said, she wants to know what these big bright lights are that that she’s seeing. And it struck me Oh, my god, she’s seeing the lights in the studio, where I worked. Yeah. And the minute I heard that I thought, This woman is for real. You better pay attention to what she has to tell you. And she for the next hour or so she just sat there picking up these bones. And she didn’t stop speaking for a second. It just kept flowing out of her. And David was translating for me. And I was trying my best to keep pace, making notes. He was trying to keep pace with her. She told me so many things. And every single thing that this old woman told me that day, 60 years ago, all came true. There were moments, there were highlights in my life that actually blew blew me away when that happened, because I only recognized when they came to pass that she foretold all that stuff. Yeah, I just I describe all this in the book. Yes.

I mean, let me give one example for your viewers. Sure. Like for example, she says, he’s not going to stay here. He is going to cross the big water. Now. She didn’t know what she was saying, because Zambia, remember, is a landlocked country. This little lady probably had never in her life, and seen the ocean, you know, maybe in the nearby river, and never been more than 10 miles away from her village. But she said he will cross the big ocean in the left direction and she’s pointing to the north. And when he goes there, there will be more lights. And they will be very famous people, and then he will do his work. Now, I had no idea what any of this meant. Yes, until I emigrated. I eventually left Zambia went back to South Africa worked in the film industry. And I immigrated to Canada because you couldn’t get a visa to come to the USA those days because of the anti apartheid policies they wouldn’t give us gifts are there for white South Africans visas. In those days, it was really difficult to immigrate, but I could go to Canada and that for me was good enough because that was like my you know the road to Hollywood if you like. And so those days you didn’t travel by air you went by sea I’m talking about 1966 and so on the voyage going to Europe on the ship one night I was standing up on the deck all on my own. And I used to look back south every night because in the southern hemisphere is a is a is the Southern Cross or is as almost as conspicuous in the sky like the Big Dipper is here in the Northern Hemisphere. It defines the southern sky and I would look at the Southern Cross every night getting low. And lower and lower and lower on the horizon. Because we were moving north, right. And halfway along this voyage took 13 days to get to Europe from South Africa, I suddenly realized she foresaw this. Yeah, I am crossing the big water, and I am going north. That’s what I’m doing. I’m sailing across the Atlantic, and I’m going from one hemisphere of the planet to the other. That old woman had foreseen this. Another thing that she told, she told me, she said, lots of things. But you know, he has another example. She told me, she said, One day, he will go to a world where there is only white, there is no color in this world at all except white. And he will be there. And he will do work there. And I thought, you know, what’s that mean? Yeah, well, comes 1991. I’m on a scientific expedition, making a film for PBS. And I’m going to Antarctica, and now we’re doing some research work in the ice, basically, to do some to find out is global warming really happening? Is the ozone hole getting bigger or getting smaller? Is the environment in the Arctic being affected by co2 in the atmosphere and methane, and is the sea getting more acidic, all that kind of stuff. So doing all this often icebreaker research ship, and it’s 1991 Christmas Eve, the captain stops the ship with dead still. Thus, the sea is covered in pack ice. And you know, everybody’s partying on board the ship and I went up on the deck was cold, I was gonna go cuddled up at writing in my diaries, I kept copious notes of everything in my life. And I’m sitting there sitting up there on the deck. And it’s like midnight, and it’s not dark, because it’s the southern hemisphere. And we so far south that the sun never set in a perpetual daylight. And I looked around and I thought, wow, this is like being in a big translucent egg because the sea was white, the ice was everywhere. The sky was white, you couldn’t even see where the horizon in the sky. It, you know, met. And I suddenly realized, Oh, my God, this is what that woman had seen. I’m in a world where there is only what, there is no color here. And I’m doing work here. You know, I was I was making a movie, she first saw that on and on and on. There was so many incidents like that. Then this incredible old woman had foreseen in her bones in a little hacked in Central Africa all those years ago. And now, you know, when this when this event happened, it’s like, nearly three decades after she foresaw it. Yeah,

you know, it was incredible.

Announcer 32:46
We’ll get back to grief to growth in just a few seconds. Did you know that Brian is an author and a life coach. If you’re grieving or know someone who is grieving his book, grief to growth is a best selling easy to read book that might help you or someone you know, people work with Brian as a life coach to break through barriers and live their best lives. You can find out more about Brian and what he offers at WWW dot grief to www dot g ri e f, the number two, gr o w th calm or text growth gr o w th 231996. If you’d like to support this podcast, visit Slash grief to growth t ar e yo slash g ri e f, the number two gr o w th to make a financial contribution. And now back to grief to growth. Yeah, you

Brian Smith 33:47
know, the thing is, is I was reading your book and one of the things you said that when you were talking about you said I kept copious notes, because I was like, I wonder how you got so much detail on the book. Because the book, we feel like I felt like I was going on the adventures with you. So you did a really good job of bringing us along and helping us to understand. And as you tell that story, I want to make sure that people understand that from the time that she gave you these predictions, until some of them came true was like 30 years or

Lionel Friedberg 34:15
more. Yeah, even more. I mean, this this was like this was over 50 years ago, nearly 60 years ago, she told me that. And it’s still happening even now. It was like, for example, one of the things you said was one day, he’s going to get very, very sick. The only way that he’s going to find any healing is to go to the place where he came from. I didn’t know what that meant. And it turns out that, you know, just a few years ago, I was diagnosed with a serious kidney condition. This is, in fact, in 1996 I think it was and you know, my nephrologist said to me, I had a biopsy and he said you know your kidneys are failing. You’re you have an autoimmune disorder that he said Serious, both of your kidneys are being attacked by your immune system and your kidneys are going to fail. You either going to be on dialysis within 10 years or you’re going to be dead, one of the two. And when I heard that I thought, maybe this is what that woman had for foretold, because she told me I was going to get very, very sick. But here’s the amazing thing. I have a friend who’s a surgeon is a white guy like me, and he’s the same age as me. And he studied at Stanford University, he originally studied in Johannesburg. And then he went to Stanford and he became a general surgeon there he practices now in Santa Barbara. And his big thing is studying the shamanic methods of back in South Africa, which is where he came from. Because there’s been so much so much proof of healing that has taken place from those traditional healers, particularly the medicine that they dispense to people, you know, doesn’t come from big, you know, a major pharmaceutical Big Pharma, and stuff that they pick from trees and leaves and grass in the bush, and people get healed. So my friend of mine, the surgeon, he wanted to study the methods and become, if you like, even ordained in the capability of being able to do that. So what he did was he found himself a teacher, back in Africa to do that. And this guy was living in Swaziland, which is a neighborhood, a neighboring country in South Africa, it sits between South Africa and Mozambique. And he had to teach there who was teaching him the ways of, of the shaman of the sangoma and how they were, you know, find how you how you go into the boondocks, and find healing stuff from herbs and herbs, whatever. And, and, and remember, he’s a general surgeon, and when when I told him about my kidney illness, he said, he said, You know, I’m going back to South Africa, and I’m going back to my teacher to for about six weeks to learn to have another course he used to go back once a year. And he said, Why don’t you come with me? I said, What, four? And he said, because maybe those guys, maybe my teacher, or maybe he knows someone like him, who will be able to help you. And I said, Excuse me, you are a surgeon. And you telling me, I’ve got some of the best specialists in the world, looking after me here in LA, telling me to go back to the bush in Africa with you to find someone who’s going to heal me. Are you serious? And he said, Yes, I absolutely AM. And you know what? I did that. And I met a lot of amazing people. I had met a lot of them before, because in the 70s, I did a series called the tribal identity, which looked at all the tribal groups in South Africa, how they differed one to the other and how their cultures and histories compared different and their traditions and so on. So I had been exposed to a lot of that during the course of the making of that isn’t a graphic series, I had an anthropologist, and we did that series. And I met a lot of sangomas during that. But Dave was serious about me actually trying to find a cure for my kidney disease. And you know what it was, it was predicted by nine by nine nephrologist that I would be on dialysis or be dead by now. And I’ve had this disease for nearly 30 years. And I’m still glad to tell the story. Man, I credit me going back to like that old lady had told me he must go back to where he came from, which means go back to your homeland, which is what I did. And I think I credit that was mainly why I’m still here today. Yeah, those guys.

Brian Smith 38:36
Yeah. And it’s it’s interesting, really fascinating that you know, because this woman tells you, she predicts your future, which is something we don’t understand in the West, right? We, we understand medicine we have we have our pharmaceutical companies, we understand I can give you this pill that can do this. And some some of these healers use herbs, but it’s it’s more than just the herb. It’s the spiritual aspect, right? Because when you did go back to get the healing, you underwent an exorcism, right? I did.

Lionel Friedberg 39:04
Yeah. Because this guy, the teacher of my friend, a wonderful old man, unfortunately, he’s passed away now. I have a great photograph of him in the book. He was he was an incredible individ You know, when when we arrived and he lived in this little art. He lived in this little compound place on the outskirts of a town called Manzini in Swaziland, actually Swaziland today is now called eswatini. The King who’s got like five or six wives he decided to rename it Swaziland was its original British term. He decided to call it after its original term eswatini so but those days when I went back that was still called Swaziland, the language they speak is Swasey, which is closely related to the end goony languages which include Zulu, Zulu and Swasey is an Guney language and so you know that basically those folks understand one another and this old man He, he said to me that when I met him as soon as we met him at his, at his compound was let me just get rid of why have I lost you? Here? I used to be okay. Okay. So the minute he met me, he said, he looked at me and he looked right through me. And he said, Ah, he said, You’re a sick man, aren’t you? He spoke perfect English. And I said, Yes, I am. And he said, tonight, we’ll throw the bones. And that night, you know, we check, we stayed at his place, we stayed in one of these guest huts in his little compound, and he throws his bonus for me. And again, the paradigm is the same. He communicates with these ancestors, the ancestors speak to him. And apparently, it’s not only his ancestors, that that that can be accessed. But my ancestors too, because apparently, according to the African paradigm, it’s my ancestors or the patient’s ancestors that influenced the way the bones fall. And then it’s the the the sangomas ancestors who allow him to interpret the way they have fallen. So he looks at the bones and he says, Oh, yes, he says, you have a very, very serious problem with one of your internal organs. And I think it’s your kidneys, isn’t it? And I said, Yes. He knew that immediately. And he said, you know what I need, you need to see someone a little more powerful than me. You need to see someone that can do a fembot on you. And when you said that, I looked at my friend Dave, and I thought, What is it’s like Indiana Jones, what does that mean? It’s like, you know, on on the front from that movie, you know, I didn’t know what it meant, but it sounded terrifying. And they’ve, they’ve said, No, you listen to the gut, you listen to exactly what he’s saying. You do exactly what he says. And so he, the next day, we go into town, and he introduces me to this short little guy was any like five foot, five foot 10 feet high, very meat mouthed little guy. I’m introduced to him, he spoke no English. And I was told that he was the man who was going to do the gemba. And in other words, he would get rid of the negative energy in my body through this process called fembot. And comes the appointed day, we go to his house, his compound up in the mountains overlooking the wilds of Mozambique, on the other side of the border. And I go to his, we welcome to his compound. He’s not he’s not, he’s nowhere to be seen. And welcomed by two younger guys, I found his sons, and all dressed in western, you know, dress. And I get shown into this large hut where all these women are sitting drumming. They’re all drumming, some of them have got babies on their backs, and they’re all singing and drumming and truly, you know, it was out of a movie straight out of a movie with a fire in the middle of the hut. And I’m told to strip down to my underwear. So I throw my you know, dignity to the wind, I couldn’t care what I you know, this is fine. Hey, why don’t you sit in the nude in the middle of this? Fine by me, whatever, you know. And I do that and I’m stripped down just to my my underwear. And I’m sitting in this in the middle of this height with a fire going. And I’m wondering, so where is this guy? You know, where’s this man who is going to perform the member. And suddenly in the other end of the hat, a door opens and various. The Civil meet guy that I’d met in town had changed, he’d become a completely different entity. He was dressed in his tribal regalia, covered in beads, wearing the skirt. He had these rattles tied around his ankles made from cocoons.

And I have to tell you, it’s straight out of Indiana Jones. And he dropped onto all fours, he dropped down to his knees, hands and feet, and on all fours, he’d become an animal. And he walked across the floor towards me, grunting and the way he walked reminded me very much about here of a hyena. It’s as though he had taken on the spirit of, of a hyena. And he came up to me and he just started to smell me all the way from my feet, all the way up to my, my, my my torso, and when he got to my kidney area, he starts to get he wants to, he wants to get sick. These two guys ran over to him with a barrel and he vomited this ghastly slimy stuff into this barrel. It’s as though he had extracted from my kidneys, some whatever it was metaphysically he taken something from me he taken out the illnesses though he had ingested it and he did so on the other side. My buddy as well. And at the end of this performance, which wait until way after midnight, I felt as though I had been relieved of whatever it was that was causing my illness, I intrinsically and implicitly felt that he had removed that bad energy. Hmm. Go figure, you know. And, you know, so we get back to the place where we stay with, with with with the the guy that we we were with. And he says to me, yeah, you are now clear of that you will be able to survive your illness. And you know, I have, it’s been absolutely amazing. And that was not in using any kind of medication, any sort of herbal, it was purely out of some kind of metaphysical supernatural method that he used, he could tell exactly what was wrong with me and rid my buddy of my illness with the age of the ancestors. Yeah.

Brian Smith 45:59
So it’s, it’s really interesting to me that you as a, as a, as a white man raised in South Africa and that society, and you saw this medicine, but it was, it was kind of taboo, I would assume for white people to take of it. But you are open to that for some reason. 100%

Lionel Friedberg 46:17
I mean, I didn’t die. And I’ll tell you why. Mainly because of this television series that I did in the 70s. When I went to all these tribal groups that I met these folks, there was just too much evidence for me when I saw what they did. There was just too much evidence that whatever they were doing worked, people were being healed, people will make a difference. I actually saw a woman who was exercised have a bad spirit, in a ceremony in an in a particular area during the making of that series. That was absolutely phenomenal. It was like straight out of the exorcist. There’s, this woman was possessed by something and I saw this, this shaman, the sangoma do a ritual with her that she came out of that as though she had been relieved of some possessive spirit. It was absolutely incredible. Now you’re not does this. It’s all sounds kind of like black magic, or Ooga booga stuff. It’s not, it’s real. They have the capability of tapping into another realm that we here in the West have no clue about him. Yeah, oh, we deny it. But these folks know about that. And they respect that. And so I develop a respect for that. So when this all began to happen, I was totally open to being exposed to this because I knew that there was more to it than just, you know, getting just hearsay. I knew that it was it would help me. And, you know, I’m proof. The fact that I’m still here is proof of that.

Brian Smith 47:41
Yeah, the fact that you’re well, the fact that you’re still here, and the fact that you documented that first reading you had in 1964, which I would imagine at that point, there was something she told you that seemed to kind of resonate with you. But I would imagine going forward as these things started to unfold, you were like, oh, wow, this really is happening.

Lionel Friedberg 47:59
Right? I mean, she foretold For example, I was nearly killed. A trampled by Marula by by an elephant in the bush when I was filming. Once in Mozambique, she foresaw that she described the event, she did not know that it was an elephant, but she described the great beast, it will want to kill you, you must be very careful. And there I was making the safari film in in in Mozambique in 1967. And I won’t go into the horrible details, because basically what it was I was doing coverage for a group of three white hunters from from California, on safari in Mozambique, giving wildlife for fun, which made no sense to me. That’s why I took the project. And you know, they shocked an elephant and missed and there was a female elephant who had a baby with her. And she knew that her baby was in danger. And she charged us. And you know, I was routed to the spot. She was actually charging the hunter who had the gun. He ran out of the shot and I was routed to the spot. I was terrified. And she kept coming towards me and I want to tell you, she would have she would have run right into me and trapped me to death. Had she not been shocked by the white hunter behind me, you know. So again, this was another incident that this woman saw in the bones. She didn’t say an elephant but he has an amazing thing. Brian, I have to tell you this. When I every time I had my bones read by a sangoma on all the later occasions. Every single time they threw the bonus for me, the very first thing they would say to me was What is this? What is this UN Global that you’ve got with you? And then global is the Zulu word for elephant. They all said you have this global spirit with you. What is this? And you know what, when that elephant when she died in front of me I filmed her death. And I felt a connection being made between me and that animal when she when she died It’s as though we made this that something happened. Something happened between us. And I’m not making this stuff up. I’m being absolutely. I think the spirit of that elephant has been around me ever since that happened. And this is way back in 1967. Wow, that she’s been around me ever since as a kind of protective spirit. And every time these shamans have read my bones, they have seen the elephant in the bones. They’ve all said, What’s the elephant spirit around you? You know, they’ve seen that, you know?

Brian Smith 50:28
So I want to ask you so you you have this reading in 1964? You’re, you’re a young man, and you’ve seen this unfold over your over your life? Yeah. Do you believe like, our lives planned out? Do you think she she saw or where she just was she was she predicting the future was? I mean, how do you What’s your feeling about that?

Lionel Friedberg 50:48
She was definitely predicting the future she was seeing into the future without even understanding fully what she was saying. Yeah, cuz she didn’t describe precise things. But, you know, the broad, the broad scheme of things all came to came to pass, like the great beast was the elephant. The white world is an article. You know, she didn’t know what that was. But she could see the vision. She could see the events. Yeah, even She even said one one thing, one of the most amazing things she said to David was this guy he will meet one day he will meet a man who knew the most evil person who ever lived in the history of the world. And that’s when I met at of hitless personal pilot, which I write about in the book. And it rises only when that happened that I suddenly realized this guy showed me his photograph albums about, you know, the inner workings of the third rice and all and, and all of those guys who made the Third Reich work, I made a document. The reason was, it was a film about aviation, this guy was a delivery pilot back in the 30s, for an airplane that flew all the way down Africa to South Africa, and eventually became out of his personal pilot. And those two were very, very close throughout throughout the world. And he was even with Hitler in the bunker the night that Hitler decided to take his life. You know, I met this guy, and he shows me his photograph albums. And again, it was like, you know, talk about six degrees of separation, I was one degree of separation, a handshake away from one of the most evil tyrants who ever lived, he was responsible for the death of millions and millions of people. This old lady had foreseen that. Yeah, how does it happen? So in answer to your question, as, as the quantum physicists are not telling us, you know, time is not, is not fixed. There is no yesterday, today and tomorrow. Yeah. And she was a typical example of that. She could foresee events way before that ever happened. So was she able to, to enter this quantum universe, which scientists are now only beginning to understand. And these folks who told her what she knew, and those who came before her, had known about all this stuff, centuries ago, that we’re only beginning to unlock now, with all our sophisticated technology and our science? they’ve known about that for centuries.

Brian Smith 53:15
Yeah, that’s my theory is that mankind at one time, we knew who we were, we understood who we were, we understood that we’re spirit beings, we understood the ancestors and all that stuff. And then we forgot Western Western culture particularly were like, We got so enamored with ourselves and our technology and our and our science. And we said, well, we know everything. Now. You don’t need that stuff anymore. So we’ll just call this witchcraft, dark magic. And, and we’ll write it off. But you know, when the thing in your book, it comes back to over and over again, it’s undeniable, as you read it, there’s, there’s a story you tell about where you’re in, I think it was in South Africa, where you guys were filming, and someone was disrespectful to, to the people there and you’re telling the story.

Lionel Friedberg 54:00
So I’m making this television series in the 70s, about the tribal groups. There is there is a tribe in South Africa called the vendor. Now, they are distinctly different to all the other tribal groups because they are slightly taller, they obviously must have originally have come from Central Africa and migrated to the south and settled in the northern part of what is now South Africa. And they speak a language that is not related to any of the other languages in South Africa like stitute, swana, Zulu, causa, you know, which is the language of Mandela. And so it’s a completely separate language and they are a very, very spiritual people. And they have a lot of amazing traditions and they have a sacred lake in their territory called Lake full duty and when I was doing the series, once every five years, the the members of the tribe of some of the chiefs and and hidden and it’s very much a patriarchal society. Remember, all of these tribal areas are very much a patriot. Local society with the chief and the headman and then you have the gentle puppets underneath it. This is the this is the African way, this is the tribal way. And it still exists very much today. So what what they had was a once every five years, they would go down to the sacred Lake, to pay homage to this, the great spirit that created the tribe, out of respect, it was like, you know, this lake was regarded to be sacred territory, and that the Spirit lived in there, and that their ancestors also hovered around the lake. Because this is this great creative spirit was there as well. And what they did was they poured offerings into the lake, usually homemade beer, which is great stuff, by the way, made from crushed corn that’s fermented. Got an infinite, but boy, it’s as nutritious that can as can be, it’s great. It’s like, it’s like, it’s like good Irish Guinness, you know, when you drink a bottle of Guinness, you drinking a meal. And, and, and this homemade brew is exactly the same. And they offer that to the spirits in the lake. So once every five years, they do that. Fortunately, we were in the timeframe where we could film one of these events. So you know, with lots of events and arrangements, and fixes and whatever else it was arranged that we would get permission to go and photograph the ceremony. And it was all going to be done in tribal regalia. they’d all be dressed in their in their traditional costumes, go down to the lake, there would be drumming, there would be music, and an old old priest of the oldest, the oldest priest in the land in this area, would officiate at the ceremony. And you know, when we met him, we asked him questions through our, through our interpreters. And we asked him questions about what he remembered as a child. And clearly this guy was way over 100 years old. And you know, and they had helped him down to the edge of the lake. And he was sort of hobbling there. But anyway, what he did was, you know, he put his hands up. And some of the other people would pour the, the, these these these offerings, this beer, and other other foodstuffs into the lake. And he was putting his hands up like this. And he was kind of catching up to this great spurt over the lake. Now my anthropologist, who was the host of the series, was in front of me. So here’s me, here’s my host, and in the background is this priest and the lake and all these other events, great shot, you know, it’s just beautifully composed. But we had to take our shoes off, because, you know, it’s holy ground, you take your shoes off in a place like that. So we had to do that. But there were lots of thorns and pebbles and stuff around. And my anthropologist stubbed his toe and was sort of hopping on his leg like this out. And my assistant, one of the assistants on the crew started to giggle. And it was infection, you know what it’s like, when when someone starts to giggle, it spreads like, you know, like wildfire, right? So we’re all starting to giggle and laugh. But the meantime the ceremony is going on, and this old guy is doing his thing. You know, doing he’s, he’s, he’s, he’s, he’s incantations, are to the Great Spirit in the lake. And we laughing we giggling behind the camera back there, which was very disrespectful of us, of course, but we couldn’t help ourselves. And I mean, really, we just couldn’t help ourselves. And he stopped. And he turned around, and he looked at us, he’s he was he’s also was like, half blind. And he just looked in our direction. The military did that. And we’re running film, by the way, we are using film and we are recording our sound on a separate tape tape deck, you know, with microphones and whatever else the minute he turned around and looked at us, because of our behavior. The cameras stopped running. The tape recorder stopped running, every electronic instrument that we had that we were using stopped. just stopped working. Oh,

I said to Peter, who’s my host? I said, Peter, just hold on one second. We got to fix we got a problem here. And I said to the sound man, Jeff, you know, get your voltmeter right. Let’s see if we got power here. So we were running around, trying to check what’s wrong with the circuits of our of our equipment? No, there’s power. There’s power coming out of the batteries. The volt meter is working. But nothing is running. None of the equipment, it’s jammed. And I said to my fixer who is a vendor guy. I said, I don’t know what’s going on here. But that guy, the priest is blocking us from filming this ceremony. He’s asking what has happened and this old piece was staring at us like this unit. Over drumming. It stopped, everything stopped and here we are in panic stations. Nothing’s working. So I fix it goes up to him and talks to him whispers into his ear. And he sort of you know, say something to the to this guy and the guy comes running back to us and says you will not respecting the Sisters, and the ancestors do not want you to film the proceedings. That is why your stuff is your equipment is not working. I said, and I said to my host, and I said to the other crew, please tell apologized profusely on our behalf. We didn’t mean to be disrespectful. Please ask him if he could ask the ancestors to allow us to continue. I see what I can do says the fixie goes back to the priest. Most of his injuries. Yeah, the old priest doesn’t say a word. He turns around, you know, is dressed in his knees, beads and his skins and whatever else. And he just holds his hands up like this. And he starts to chant out to the lake again, at that moment, everything starts working again. The tape recorder starts running, the camera starts working, the curse was lifted, the blockage was lifted, whatever it was, was gone. There is no question that there are powers and forces that we do not understand. And it’s beyond our paradigm to understand that those guys do. He did.

Brian Smith 1:01:12
Yeah, yeah, I really think that it’s kind of a thing that we need to go back to, to respecting more because we all came from that we all we all but we so we kind of forgot about it. And you I mean, there’s so much more because when we talk about extended consciousness, another thing that people are talking about a lot in ours UFOs. And the government nice size government has disclosed a little bit and I think there’s some work stuff coming. We’re going to talk about now that you’ve had some experience with UFOs as well.

Lionel Friedberg 1:01:39
I have I have you know, I think that we probably put a lot of people are saying that this is the year of disclosure. You know, I mean, recently when the US Navy released that footage from the USS Nimitz that that training flight down here in near San Diego, I mean, that was extraordinary footage, it was carried by all the networks, right. That stuff has been, you know, around for for years for decades. Right. I mean, it predating Roswell. I mean, it goes back much earlier than that. We have there is no question that they are, they are they are there there are craft that we do not understand. visiting our planet. There’s no question of that. And I don’t think for one second, that we are alone in the universe. And you know, I’ve often asked in in tribal areas, what do they think about this? And do they ever see things in the skies? Because I’ve always been fascinated by this. And I’m going to tell my UFO story in a second. And they say, Oh, sure, absolutely. You know, yeah, they come here we see them. And and this guy that I was telling you about earlier, my friend, the surgeon who took me back to this wasn’t and he spent some time with the sun. Bushman who are the last remaining remnants of the Stone Age culture of Africa, they still live in Botswana. In the Kalahari Desert. They’re a nomadic group of people who move everyday from one place to another. And they have what is known as a trance dance at night, they light a fire, and the men go around the fire, and they go into another state of consciousness, they go into another stage of awareness altogether. And it’s almost like doing remote viewing women drum and they go into a state where they can see where the wildlife or the the animals will be a week from now, or two days from now or three days from now, and where they will be because they’re hunter gatherers, so that they know where to go and do the hunt. And they can see that they travel there in their in their consciousness in their trance dense state. Yeah, these are the sudden people have but they still do it now, you know, so. And when my friend went there on one, one of his research trips, above the camp one night Is This Disc just appears above the group of people in the middle of the Kalahari Desert. It’s nothing there except sand dunes, a fire and these people going around before the the flames and the women drumming. And my friend says, What’s that? And the interpreters asks one of the local people, what’s that? And then the OLED guy, this was in New Zealand tells him and he says, he comes back and he says, Oh, don’t worry about them. Those are the people from the other world that come here all the time.

It’s like, don’t be in that it happens every day. You know, it’s a, it’s a given. We’re not alone. And those folks know that, you know, where we, you know, make a big deal out of it. And I think it’s because we’re hostile. You know, that maybe a UFO would have landed on the White House lawn on the White House lawn, or on the Mall, you know, or in Fifth Avenue, or wherever, if we weren’t so hostile because we are probably the hostile ones, not them. Now, I’ll tell you a story. Who knows what these what these what these craft are and I do believe that we have been exposed to alien entities I really do. But that’s another whole subject matter. But in 1966, I was in Canada, and I was working on a documentary about how urban areas developed in Canada, and are the Canadians live basically, all along a string along just north of the US border. That’s where all the major cities are. Right? Everyone knows that. But here and there, you find the little settlements up in the northern Canada is huge. And so we were filming in the province of Saskatchewan. And what we need what we were doing was we were filming at a protest plant protest is that they dig the dig the stuff out of the ground, like a white material. And they use it and fertilizer and all that sort of stuff. And, and in this potage plant, they they there’s nothing in that area, other than, you know, wheat fields, and cornfields for miles and miles and miles. And this potash mine. So we wanted to film a sequence day because I rounded was developing this little town. And that was part of our story, how communities get born, the genesis of urban areas and how they develop. So we needed to film with this potage plan. So that night, we staying it’s a small crew, just three of us, we stay at a motel, and the next morning, we get up pretty early to go and drive to the protest plant. And we’re driving and you could see that like 3040 miles away, you could see this white dust coming up from the rug. And there’s clouds sitting in the sky from this potez plant. And, you know, eventually we get to, to to the plant, we get to the main gate. And as we get to the main gate, and the guy says to you, you know, he signs us in he says, You guys are going to get down to the parking lot and and take a look at that cloud because there’s something up there. Like, you know, what do you mean? No, we don’t know what it is. But there’s something up there in that cloud, you know? Okay, fine. So we drive done station wagon days, the days when you used to have station wagons, and we drive down and we unpacked the station wagon, I unpacked the camera equipment, the director, I wasn’t directing that the director meets the manager of the mind, and they go and talk about the day’s filming. But I set up the camera in the parking lot. And I put on the longest lens, we have like a telephoto lens. And I trained it on this club because a couple of the guys from the working at the mine, they came up to me and they said, Are you trying to shoot? Are you trying to get a picture of that thing that’s up there? And I said, Yeah, what is it is it and they said we don’t know. But every now and again, you can sort of catch a glimpse of something sitting in that cloud. I’m intrigued. So I put on this lens. And I look at this card. And after about 20 minutes or so a little breeze comes up and the card dissipates. And in the cloud is definitely something metallic. Hmm. And I think wow, you know, I was a UFO flying saucer fanatic ever since I read ga dumpskey book back in the early 50s about flying saucers have landed. You know, that was the first evidence that perhaps things were like UFOs plank sources existed, right? And so I was always open to that and interested Besides, I was always a sci fi nut. And so I was waiting for whatever this thing was to reveal itself. And then another little breeze comes up. And I tell you, there is this cruft sitting up in the sky. Now people often ask me, How high how big. This was before the days of 747 jumbo jets. But it was a size of one of those around around disk, a triangle beneath the disk and like a tripod connecting the the triangle to this disk, no windows, no sound, nothing just their metallic, the sun reflecting off the surface of this thing. Well, in this card, and I run film, I’m running film, I’m getting some film, we shooting 16 millimeter on this particular documentary. And I’m running film. And I must have shot about 150 film, if you the film of nothing, except this, this craft sitting in the white sky in this whacked out.

Anyway, I’ve entered turn the camera off because of the cloud eventually, you know, covered it up again. And the director comes out and says Okay, enough of that, let’s get on with it with the work we had to do. And we spend the rest of the day working at the plant. You know, at that night, we still had no idea what we’d seen. That night it was my job to go down to the local railroad depot and hand in the film to be sent all the way to Montreal to go to the lab to be processed to await our arrival, you know, weeks later, which I did, but I separated this piece of film in a separate cannon. I said hold for our arrival, you know, just for the editor, just keep this dump. don’t dump it just keep it and so you know a few weeks later we get back to Montreal and now it’s time to look at the at the dailies of this shoot that we’d been on and you know, we took a lot I’m looking at all the boarding footage of housing and you know, mines and stuff. And at the end of all of that the projectionists at the back yells out, he said, You want me to show this? This short reel? Yeah, that you’ve got yet that says, hold for a rival? Yes, please put it on. So you know, he puts it on. And we’ve got the head of the camera department there. We’ve got a couple of other people there. And showing up on the screen as clear as day like there is this craft, sitting in the sky, silently doing absolutely nothing except us. There. Wow. And the feeling was, we don’t know what that is. But it was a during the days of Project bluebook. And everyone knew about Project bluebook. You know, it was it was it was it was big news Project Blue Book was run by J. Allen Hynek out of I think it was Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio. And so the head of the camera Department says why don’t we send that footage down to the States? And let them analyze it and see what it is. Maybe it’s something that they’d be interested in? Who knows, you know, so yeah, sure. So the the the secretary who worked for him, her name was Frankie Johnson, I’ll never forget her name. She you know, wraps up the stuff and carries it to Ohio. And we forget about it. Some weeks go by and one day I go into the camera department and I say to her Frankie, did we ever hear back from those folks in the in the States about that, that thing that we that we shot above Saskatchewan above that mind? And she said no, let me call them. You know. And it was, you know, she looked at the time difference. He said, I can call a hire right now. So she calls the project bluebook, the office from the camera department office? And she says, oh, oh, really? I’m sorry to hear that, you know, and put you puts the phone down. She said they deny ever receiving the footage? No. It was Korea to them, they did receive it, they signed for it and then denied ever receiving it. Which lend to me, and secondly, to a whole lot of other folks. The fact that they was you know, there was an attempt to conceal information from the public about these stones.

Brian Smith 1:12:13
Yeah, there’s no doubt about that at this point. I mean, the government has admitted it. So, you know, if you told me this 10 years ago, I might say okay, but yeah, now they’ve admitted it,

Lionel Friedberg 1:12:24
there’s that they have. So you know, so how much more is there to know, I think a lot. And I think the time is coming? Pretty close, that they may reveal some stuff to us, you know? Because, yeah, there’s definitely it’s for real, it’s it’s, it’s it’s been happening for a long, long time. Jacques valet is a very, very famous French researcher who’s been collecting material about this stuff for years and years. He’s just brought out an incredible new book. And it goes right back to the times of even Ancient Egypt. He’s got artwork in this book that shows and even on the Middle Ages, you know, they were tapestries and paintings done in Europe, about flying objects in the sky. It’s been around forever.

Brian Smith 1:13:09
Yeah, absolutely. We’re running a little bit over. But I do want to ask you one more question I want to talk to you about you. So you shot a documentary about near death experiences, it’s like to get get your take on that for a few minutes,

Lionel Friedberg 1:13:22
I met a number of people who had Indies. And all of them told extraordinary stories. The one particular one that I found particularly interesting was a woman by the name of I just use her first name, Pam, this was in Atlanta, she was clinically dead on the operating table, they had to remove an aneurysm from her brain. And she was you know, it’s it’s very tricky to not have oxygen going to the brain because your brain can can basically shut down. So you gotta, you gotta, you gotta, you gotta be able to, if you if you are dead, and I have resuscitated people many, many times, you know, by using pedals on the, but the trying not to let the brain not get oxygen for too long, because you could have permanent brain damage, right? This is always the problem. But they had a Pam, they had to stop the blood flowing in her veins and stop her heart. Because that was the only way to get the aneurysm to get into the brain and get the aneurysm out of there without her losing a lot of blood. So she must have been clinically dead for about 15 minutes. And then they sewed it up, put in an revived, resuscitated her. And when she was resuscitated After that, she basically described every single thing that happened to her to her surgeon, a surgeon didn’t believe a word of it. And he said, Great, what did what did you see? She described things that he did. She described the fact you know, one of the assistants at during the operation, the surgeon asked for an instrument then the nurse dropped it and he scolded her. And Pam said I saw you do that. Why did you do that? You saw that you were connected. did at that time to sit now I saw you do that. She described the music that he was playing the surgery went on for like four or five hours. And he had a little tape deck in the corner of the of the of the operating room. She said I liked some of your music. But I didn’t like the song. And I didn’t like that. He said, How could you possibly have heard that? So I interviewed him, I talked to her. There was no question that she was absolutely awake and alive and aware throughout her operations. And she was witnessing what was going on. I met, I met a guy who was basically the dead, he was crushed by a boulder. And he was brought back to life. And he described his entire trip in the ambulance, what happened to him in the operating room. But you know, talking to adults is one thing. But what really was amazing for me were the children that I talked to who had near death experiences. There’s a guy who’s a pediatrician in Seattle. And I’ll try and make this quick because I know we’re running over time now. But I met about four or five kids that were introduced to me by this pediatrician, he interviewed kids who had all been clinically dead, and being resuscitated. And he asked them to draw pictures of what they saw while they were asleep. In other words, while they were dead, and yeah, yeah, all of those pictures were very similar. And none of these kids knew each other, this tunnel of light, these white beings, these angels, these big blobs of light that floated around the fact that they were given an option to return back to mommy and daddy, or to go to another place, you know, follow the angels, or whatever, whatever these white fingers were that they’re talking about. When kids tell you things like that they’re not lying, they’re making it up, especially when they don’t know each other and also similar. So there is no death. It’s just the demise of the physical body. And for Polk folks who really want to find out some really good scientific stuff about it. Read about Dr. Robert john, and the Princeton anomalies Research Unit at Princeton University guy is not passed on he was in my show, I did a show for one of the networks called Beyond this a two hour show. And the brief was what happens to the to the consciousness, or the spirit or the soul, and the body dies. And that’s what this two hour special was about. I met the most, there is no death. It’s just the demise of a physical being. We go on, there is no end. Wow, there’s no question of that.

Brian Smith 1:17:28
Well, that is that is a great note to end on. I want to thank you for for doing this. This has been a fascinating time spent with you. Any last thoughts you want to say before we wrap up?

Lionel Friedberg 1:17:39
You know, I think I think probably one I’d like to you know, if I have anything to say, and if I’ve learned anything, and particularly now You and I are doing this a day after martin luther king day, when we are we’re doing this interview today. You know, and, and, and tomorrow is Inauguration Day. And so we’re living in kind of troubling times, and a lot of people are scared. And we’ve got a pandemic around us. The world is dark and scary right now. But you know, I just want folks to think and because my experience has been, you know, there’s always light at the end of every tunnel. And we always have to remain, maintain a positive attitude. And I think one of the most critical and important things to do is to not to listen to hearsay, but to be curious, within yourself, and to try and find out. If you’re curious about anything, find out as much as you can without believing everything that you’re told, because I have found that insatiable curiosity, keeps you alive and keeps you young and keeps you going. The more we know, the more we know what we don’t know. And how much more incredible is the universe as we live in this incredible place? Well, it’s an extraordinary, it’s an extraordinary journey. We’re all on the same journey. And I think we’re all connected. I think there’s a grid that binds every one of us.

Brian Smith 1:19:02
Absolutely. Well, I want to thank you again, for being here. I want to tell people how they can get the book. It’s coming out very shortly. We’re recording this on January 19 2021, is called forever in my veins. How film led me to the mysterious world of the African shaman just by Lionel freedberg. You can find out more about the book at john hunt And I’ll put a link to that in the show notes. Or on

Lionel Friedberg 1:19:27
Amazon. It’s available right now.

Brian Smith 1:19:28
It’s available on Amazon right now. Okay, great.

Lionel Friedberg 1:19:30

Brian Smith 1:19:31
I want to encourage people to get the book if you like the movies, if you like adventure. And it’s it’s it’s a whole adventure of your life mixed in with all this great stuff about, you know, the extended consciousness realm that we’re all interested in. So thanks again for being here.

Lionel Friedberg 1:19:47
Thank you, Brian. Thank you so much. It’s been a great pleasure. Thanks for having me on. And thanks, everyone for watching. I appreciate it so much.

Brian Smith 1:19:53
Thanks. Have a good day.

Lionel Friedberg 1:19:54
Thank you.

Brian Smith 1:19:55
That’s it for another episode of grief to growth. I sure hope you got something out of it. Please stay in contact with me by reaching out at www dot grief to That’s grief the number two or you can text the word growth to 31996. That’s simply text growth gr o w th 231996. So if you’re watching this on YouTube, please make sure you subscribe. So hit the subscribe button, and then hit the little bell here and it’ll notify you when I have new content. Always please share the information if you enjoy it. That helps me to get more views and get the message out to more people. Thanks a lot and have a wonderful day.

Transcribed by

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *