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“I use all my tools, including myself, because I am an open individual who is not closed off to the possibilities of what life offers and why we are here.” -Alexandra Holzer

October 8, 2011

Interviews, Research & Lifestyle

DarkMedia Interviews Alexandra Holzer:

Nearly half a century ago, renouned Parapsychologist Hans Holzer changed the face of paranormal research and investigation forever.  And while the torch he lit is an essential one to carry, it’s an important point to note that it’s never ceased to be as heavy as it is luminous.  The Holzer legacy isn’t one to ever be taken lightly, either by those who are looking in from the outside, or by the family members chosen to bear its weight and carry it forward.  Within the Holzer family, and what is now called the “Holzer Method”, you’ll find the true, profound, gravity of paranormal investigation; not as it’s often portrayed in the media, but as it exists and has always existed within the most exclusive and educated circles in the field.

As a testament to this legacy, Alexandra Holzer, daughter of the late Hans Holzer, has dedicated her research, her career, and so much of her life to ensuring that this torch not only keeps burning, but is propelled forward for future generations to see.  And to call Alexandra a force of nature would not only be cliche, it just might be something of an understatement.  Precious few in this world approach their work, or their legacy, with the voracity, passion and conviction that she clearly has in such abundance.  To know Alexandra Holzer will not only give you a glimpse of the past, but an understanding of the future possibilities, and the promise, within the field of paranormal research and investigation.

DarkMedia had the privilege of talking with Alexandra about the Holzer legacy, contacting her late father, women in the paranormal community, “young” ghost hunters, and where we all go from here.

In “My Haunted Life”, you attempted to make contact with your father. Can you describe a little about that experience? Was it the first, or the last, time you attempted to communicate with him since his passing? And, most importantly, what do you think he’s been trying to say?

In our reel, shot by LA Production House Go Go Luckey, “My Haunted Life” depicts an experience of how, since my father’s passing almost three years ago, he has been working with me through dreams, mediums and the Ghost Box.  And it is with any box, and with anybody, as long as it’s me reaching out to help trapped spirits known as ‘Ghosts’.

In death, he has become the father I so needed in life when it came to the field. It makes it a very ironic and paradoxical situation for me, and one that I do not believe anyone in this field can begin to imagine, as he was one of the field’s modern iconic pioneers. So, not only is it a parent that I lost, but a mentor, educator and researcher who made waves and protocols for the Paranormal Communities on a global scale for decades. It goes beyond the daughter who simply lost her father. What I think or believe he is trying to say isn’t needed in analysis, as I already know. He has come to me in some vivid dreams, and at this point I don’t feel inclined to share openly, as it is still very raw to me. I, myself, am dealing with this loss and wrapping my head around it — him in a different vehicle, still communicating with me. I can say, however, that he is egging me on to continue his legacy, his work and protocols, such as what we become when we pass, and do cross over (called ‘Beings of Light’), and when we’re stuck and become a ghost (also called ‘Stay-Behinds’), and so forth — plus my own take on the Metaphysics side, protocols and the re-emerging of The Spiritual Movement, which I am all about.

You’ve recently mentioned your voracious desire to make a television show work, based on your belief that a “woman leading is crucial and needs to trend”. What struggles do you think leading women face in the paranormal community? What changes would you like to see happen, and how do we get there?

Yes. I believe woman are not publicly trending on television in the reality realm, as anyone with a brain and eyeballs that work can clearly see, it is male-dominated, and branded as certain-types as well. This makes the desire and need to trend woman who should be validated.  Women who are charismatic enough to hold the viewer.  It almost feels like networks are afraid to touch me, for instance, as if the cookie-cutter show formats that are regurgitated over time are the only formulas to work. Not so. But, you do have to take a chance on me as the reel clearly indicates and, if I may say so myself without coming off snobby, a beautifully crafted mini-documentary on the history of the Paranormal — as only I could be and portray. It is another formula that works, and works beautifully, but without exposure no-one will ever know and father and I will be come a Lost Civilization. We’re taught to preserve our history, and the Paranormal is no different. That is my personal plight as far as the show goes. This becomes a woman’s struggle and plight to be heard and to also carry their work, teams, tools and technique forward in the media. We’re here. We just need that exposure, and people will follow, and on it goes. I came close to getting greenlit by a female-oriented network and it was an amazing feeling of triumph, respect, historical value and validation and, in Charlie Sheen’s own words, I was ‘Winning’ — but in the end put back on the table.

Changes? Giving me that chance to lead on a larger scale and platform, as many others with very little historical value or background were given only because they got lucky or knew the right people. I have become the paranormal underdog. Change, and trending something new, takes time and I will not give up.

In the past, you’ve mentioned a reluctance, or even a burden, in carrying the torch of your father’s legacy. Do you still feel that way now? Why or why not?

Yes, I have said that in the past and still feel that today, as any child would feel like if they were carrying on, or in, the family business so-to-speak.  There is a certain pressure, and assumptions, that come with the territory. You’d be amazed at the ‘riding the coattails’ remarks I have been given over the years, but I have grown a thick skin to the lack of intelligence that runs amuck in our world in general. I find that in society we are quick to label, we are quick to assume, and we are quick to put down. However, we are slow to compliment, and we are slow to support — unless we have a television show.  Then, regardless of who you are or what you do, you’re great. It is bizarre and indicative of our pop culture, which is nice on one hand but on the other carries very little accountability for actions of spilled, hurtful words — most of the time from those uneducated in what it is they are critiquing.

In life, you learn to surround yourself with the right people and right audience and try not to succumb to wanting the popularity, as I believe one will garner that from being respected over becoming a television star. It may take longer, but I am proving that; over the years I have been interviewed, written up both in print and internet media, in big and small places, without any television exposure. It wasn’t until recently that I finally got on-air (The Travel Channel), and that hardly showcased anything of what I am really about. I look around, and for a woman in my field, at age forty, I offer a unique perspective and back-story, with a hip edge, that others just don’t have.  And I am proud to say that out loud.  Why shouldn’t I? I am done putting myself down or not acknowledging my abilities and legacy. If I don’t believe in me then others surely won’t.

Dr. Hans Holzer

That is a loaded question, and I couldn’t possibly sum it up in this interview as then you’d be printing a Novella.  However, if I had to, under the gun, I’d say The Holzer Legacy began by a man born in Vienna, Austria with a vision that there is more to death then just death itself. The body is merely a vessel that our soul gets transported out of — jetted into a layer of another realm and, dependent upon how we lived in life, how we passed in life will dictate if we’re a spirit or ghost.  Both are one and the same, just one is free and one is stuck.

Everything else in the legacy of The Holzer name is layered, delving deep into our universe, tapping into the possible existence of Humanoids, UFOs, Possessions, Ghosts, Witches and Warlocks, The Occult and (one of my father’s all time favorite topics) Atlantis. The field today is so focused on Ghosts and Demons with little attention to UFOs, Lost Civilizations such as Atlantis, the mysteries surrounding The Bermuda Triangle, and other lifeforms — which Holzer also stood for in research and literature. Father met with Betty Hill, as Barney had passed, over the famous Hill UFO story.

The Holzer Legacy is about research and findings, in The Occult and Supernatural world, that catapult past Earth into our Universe, with more unknown mysteries zipping back down under our ocean beds where crafts could be laying, and other worlds.

With or without your family’s legacy, it’s clear that you bring an incredible amount to the field of paranormal investigation. Tell us about your passion for the paranormal. What are your greatest strengths? Your greatest obstacles?

Thank you. Yes, contrary to popular belief I contribute my own brand of Holzersims, which father began in the early fifties, to today — relating to a younger generation, yet also appealing to the older generation that grew up Holzer, for lack of a better explanation. My passion in this field grew with me as I aged in a bizarre household of mediums, witches, story-telling that went beyond any child’s imagination for those times, odd odors of bizarre concoctions brewing in the kitchen when father had his Occult pals over, and so forth, molding my mind and heart into a female version of Harry Potter.

I always knew things before they occurred, always felt them, always knew I was not like the others. Being sent to private schools my whole life, being around money which I didn’t boast, put me in a world that I could not relate to — and not because of the materialistic differences. No. It was due, in part, to the fact that my world was Paranormal and theirs wasn’t.

My greatest strength is that I get ‘impressions’ that guide me with people, places and things. I use my sixth sense like a homing beacon and danger sign. I carry with me compassion, and a heart I wear on my sleeve, that cannot possibly mix with the likes of brutal, agenda-driven personas as they will make me ill and I won’t relate well to them. I am also creative, having gone to art school, and always, being a writer, am able to mold to any situation like a chameleon. Having said that, that becomes a great obstacle; I am not business oriented and end up giving away more books then I sell. I am working on that though.

Where would you like to see the field of paranormal investigation, and the role of paranormal entertainment within that, ten years from now? And what part do you hope you’ll play between here and there?

I’d like to see the balance that father created and popularized, which is the combination of the science and metaphysics of the field, utilizing all tools available and weeding out those that don’t readily or sensibly help with researching the areas of the vast field, and tightening it up to where we pinpoint as much as we can — for explanation, or none at all, but at least a valid conclusion. As art is subjective, the Paranormal is no different. I also would like to see a form of creation for anyone who wants to be, or claiming to be an Investigator.  Weeding that riffraff out.  Today, anyone can say they are one, reenacting their favorite television show scenarios and going to locations as-seen-on-tv, calling themselves a title for which my father was given first, “Ghost Hunter” circa 1950.  The organization MUFON has one, and a grand board of Directors, and members to facilitate the seriousness of the belief system and research that goes into extraterrestrial life and events. Father was one man working with many, and accredited as a Parapsychologist, getting his professorship to teach at The New York Institute of Technology in Manhattan, along with lecturing and writing globally.  This is along the lines of what I’d like to see today, but in a more studious environment, utilizing both the internet and interactions with those already proven in the field to be validated resources and members. Paranormal Entertainment shouldn’t even be in the same sentence, however; it is what some of it has become, hasn’t it? Let’s bring some class back to the field and showcase it historically.  While we will always have the other portrayals out there, this way is needed as well.  People can choose what to view and take with them in their training and research. I hope to be a leader in this mentality: Preserving the Paranormal History and leading as a legacy, teaching others as well as myself.  Always learning and evolving.

What’s the most significant experience you’ve ever had with the paranormal? Did it change you in any way?

My life is the significant experience; the mother of all para-mothers, as the Paranormal is life, death, the in-between happenings of other lifeforms and energies abound every second of every day. It changes me all the time and will keep doing so long after I pass. There is no end and there is no beginning.

You wear so many hats, from author to radio host to wife and mother of four. How do you balance it all? What’s your secret?

Adding to that two children, a year apart, developing an autoimmune system deficiency called Type 1 Diabetes or also otherwise referred to as Juvenile Diabetes (www.jdrg.org) has reverted the sleep I got back after the kids were past the age of three to having a newborn again and awake every three hours doing blood checks and Keytone checks. I have an energy that I cannot explain, and won’t begin to attempt to, but I do believe a higher power and source birthed me to carry on an amazing plight and life force — knocking my way through and past the ugliness that life throws at us.  Like the energizer bunny, I keep going and going and going.

How do you feel about the growing number of “ghost hunters” in the field of paranormal investigation. Do you see them as a credit to the groundbreaking work your father did, or a distraction from it? If it’s the latter, what’s the solution?

I feel like this. Part of the growing amount of people creating teams off of televisions shows (not including those that have been working with others in the name of research, they are not to be lumped into my opinion here), and doing investigations, as they call it, hitting this place and that, just to hear an EVP or be touched, are what I refer to as ‘Para-Thrill Seekers’ and, larger places, ‘Para-Amusement Park Rides’.

I know I will offend many who work at some of these types of places, and/or teams that are newly created, as not every facility and not every team are what I just described. I couldn’t possibly know everyone to honestly answer this question, but I am being asked my opinion.  So, I am generalizing because, overall, the mix I referred to are the ones I just described. I know many young teams today that are wonderful, and many facilities that are run for the right reasons.  Great, but as it is with anything in life, it’s mixed with commercialized this and that — and this field has become part of that scenario.

It was different back in the day; classy with an air of intellect and responsibility that I am not seeing as much today. It has nothing to do with thinking everything changes, so let’s just throw up our hands in the air and forget the past, and history, and pretend like the next generation are Para-Kings and Queens ruling the earth and its unknowns, because television dictates, or films do with mocking and copying. Here is where I ask, no, demand: That one use their brain, please, and seriously ask if that is what this field truly is all about.

I do not see them at all in connection to my father, as it is a new generation. And that doesn’t mean better, or groundbreaking, just young.  A lot of them popularized sensationalistic views of what the field is not truly about. It is not a distraction, because I am here to make sure the difference is known, as well as the past, moving forward with my research and theories is in tact; spouted out for all to hear, see and experience. Hence, why I began teaching again with lectures, and my course is called ‘The Holzer Method’.

I do not want the growing change in this field to desensitize, put down or minimize the impact and work my family did — nor should it. I am the field’s advocate for its history, forefathers and researches alike, and I will be damned if I let just anyone come in and tell me otherwise. I am open to technology always changing, as I stated above.  I use some equipment, so did father. The difference is I use all my tools, including myself, because I am an open individual who is not closed off to the possibilities of what life offers and why we are here. What I’d like to ask is what happens to the evidence collected after these groups, teams, organizations etc., collect, what do they do with it? How do they help the ghosts or spirit passing by with a message perhaps? How do they decipher this information once they have collected it? Investigative work is just that. Investigative in terms of taking time and working with many who specialize in many areas to gather, collect and pick apart what the dead are saying to us in as close to real-time as possible. Here is the difference between some today and others who I say are genuinely serious investigators, without a doubt, who care and try to help. The solution? To be vocal and sponsor your plight and back it up with fact, theory and research — always with a sense of humor and not just look to do Facebook and Twitter uploads, thinking they just caught something new, and “look at me, look how wonderful I am” messages. Yeah. Again, it is dependent on the individual doing that; if it’s to share and question, great.  But if it’s done irresponsibly, left hanging and not reworked to find out more about what they caught, and why, then it’s not the true field and just a waste of time in my opinion. You should do a write-up concluding your findings, or lack thereof, and move on. Something educated.

What are you working on right now? What do your fans have to look forward to, and how can people connect with you and find out more about the work you’re doing?

Right now I am working on a few things. My first priority and energies are directed at getting the show greenlit.  And while we are constantly working at that, I write my two columns, one for Paranormal Pop Culture called ‘Holzer’s Haunted History‘ and another for the popular holistic and green-zine called OM Times,  which showcases many celebrities making a difference in our world. I have books started, screenplays, and children’s short stories that always command my attention, I co-host a radio show with Berks County, PA’s morning veteran DJ Scott weekly called Paranormal View 2.0 on WY102 FM, and recently I became sponsored by Gettysburg, PA Museum of Spirits, lecturing again. This time I wrote a course that I am teaching called ‘The Holzer Method’.  Adding to that my theories and research, thoughts on approaching the field today, and utilizing the past in the future. I also have some great stories I tell and jokes that are dependent on my audience as I use them. Ha!  Well, I like to make my audience feel like a round-table discussion and we have “cawfee-talk” Holzer style, where we shoot from the hip in a classy way, really using our brains in discussions about this very layered and deep field. I am always on the look out for a great new joke, a hug and knowing that you took something positive away from experiencing a true pedigree, lineage and one-of-a-kind family.

______________________________________________

Alexandra can be found on DarkMediaCity, IMDB, Facebook, and Twitter, along with her blog and website.

(All interviews are the exclusive property of DarkMedia, and may not be reproduced or shared without permission, excepting links to the interview.)

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  1. ‘Tis the Season for Giveaways on DMC! | DarkMediaMagazine - December 28, 2011

    […] Enter to win a signed copy of GROWING UP HAUNTED: A GHOSTLY MEMOIR by RSVPing “yes” here, only on DMC, until January 30th.  And be sure to read DarkMedia’s exclusive interview with the incomparable Alexandra Holzer here. […]

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