“Exorcist” author William Peter Blatty has a new book out. Titled “Finding Peter,” it’s part comic memoir, part argument for life after death. Blatty, a lifelong Catholic, lays out a number of curious incidents — electric lights mysteriously flickering on and off, etc. — that have convinced him that his son Peter, who died of a rare heart disorder in 2006 at the age of 19, has been communicating with him from beyond the grave. …
Your book’s subtitle is “A True Story of the Hand of Providence and Evidence of Life After Death.” It’s telling that you use the word evidence — what a lawyer might present to a jury. That’s not the same thing as proof.
No, it’s not proof at all. Any one of even the most dramatic incidents that I cite in the book could be explained as coincidence. It’s only when they’re considered in the context of eight years of this kind of going-on that, for me at least, they take on considerably more weight. …
Has anyone who heard the Peter stories called you a kook?
No. First of all, I didn’t tell anything of this to strangers or shallow friends, only to a very few people who I trusted and who trusted me. I shared the stories with them, and two or three of them said, “You’ve got to do a book.” …
“The Exorcist” put forward the notion of evil incarnate.
I have moved away from the belief in fallen angels to the belief that demons are, in fact, spirits of the dead who are behaving very, very badly. In fact, in all of the possession literature since the beginning of the 20th century, most cases involve the spirit of someone who has died.
What message do you believe Peter is sending you from that realm?
I’m alive. I have not been extinguished. I have not plunged into oblivion. I care, and I am in communion. Of course, my Catholic faith believes in the communion of saints.
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