George Chapman, who died in 2006, was brought up in the working-class docklands area of Merseyside, Liverpool. He worked variously as a docker, a firefighter, and he was a professional boxer. Maurice Barbanell, former Fleet Street newspaper editor once remarked about Chapman; ‘When Spiritualism’s history comes to be written, the Lang/Chapman partnership, which has brought health to thousands of sufferers after their cases were called “hopeless”, will contribute some of its most illumined pages’, and this will shortly be explained. During World War II Chapman became an Air Force Commander and then he joined Marines, where he taught unarmed combat. He met his wife Margaret in 1945 and they had a daughter Vivian, but sadly she died just 4 weeks after her birth. This tragedy caused Chapman to consider, was there an afterlife? In search of answers, he turned to the Clergy, but they warned him not to dabble ‘in the supernatural.’
After the War, Chapman joined the Fire Brigade where he met a fellow fireman called Leslie Miles. On the long nightshifts between emergency calls, Miles would experiment with an upturned tumbler and the letters of the alphabet, in an attempt to receive messages from the spirit world, and it wasn’t long before the rest of the fire crew, their curiosity fully aroused, joined in with him. Soon, they were all sitting around the table at night at the fire station, putting their fingers on the glass and watching it move from letter to letter to spell out words and phrases. Meanwhile at home, Chapman began to do the same thing with his wife, and before long he was stunned to receive a message purportedly from his dead mother, who had died when he was just 5 years old. Of course, he needed to check that he wasn’t simply deluding himself, and so he asked his relatives to see if what his dead mother had told him could be verified. To his surprise, his relatives confirmed it all to be completely correct. This helped Chapman to believe that there really could be life-after-death and he began to spend a couple of hours at home every day trying to receive more messages from spirits. To his surprise, many of the messages they gave him told him that he was a healer. As well as being a fireman, Chapman was a professional boxer. How on earth could he be a healer then, he wondered to himself? He had to find out more and so soon he put together a development circle with likeminded people, where further spirit messages repeated to him that he was a healer. Spirits were coming through Chapman – even though he had no idea at the time because he had gone into trance and was completely oblivious to it. The spirits were healers too, they said, and they were going to work with him. According to Chapman’s later biography, ‘One of the spirits was introduced to us as Dr. Lang.’ Dr. Lang told them that Chapman would be working with him to heal sick patients. Of course, Chapman didn’t take this as fact; after all, it sounded completely incredulous, and firstly, he wanted to know if a Dr. Lang had even ever really existed. He wanted absolute proof. ‘Too many alleged spirit guides do not stand up to critical exam,’ he wrote, and the spirit communicating with them, ‘should be able to give dates, names, and details of his earthly experiences.’ Dr. Lang duly went on to give names, dates, places, for the purpose of verification, and Chapman began to check them out. ‘There were colleagues of Lang still in practice. There were also patients who had consulted him while he was a surgeon on earth…they confirmed that it was the same Dr. Lang they had known.’ Pretty soon, Chapman began to do what the spirits were urging him to do – to become a healer and treat people, and he set up a clinic at his home in Aylesbury. One of his patients was a Dr. Kildare Singer, who had been taught ophthalmology by Dr. Lang at the Middlesex Hospital and was suffering with cancer. When Dr. Singer came to hear that people were visiting Chapman to receive spiritual healing, he paid Chapman a visit. At the time, Singer had no idea that Chapman was working the dead Dr. Lang, his former medical tutor, but, says Chapman, ‘Recognition came instantly when he walked into my sanctuary. Lang, speaking through my lips, greeted him with the words, “Hello, my dear boy, I am so happy to see you again.” Dr. Singer instantly recognised the characteristic voice of Dr. Lang. There was also a Mrs. Katherine Pickering. She came to Chapman for healing too. She had been a patient of Dr. Lang for fifteen years from the age of four, suffering with myopia after catching measles. Again, through Chapman’s developing reputation as a spiritual healer she had heard of him, but she had no idea about the dead Dr. Lang. When she entered Chapman’s treatment room, she suddenly heard the distinct voice of her old doctor, Dr. Lang, who greeted her by saying, “It’s nice to see you again after all these years, Topsy. I remember you when you were so high.” Mrs. Pickering then explained to Chapman that Dr. Lang had always called her “Topsy.”
It was around this time that Chapman met a man who claimed to be able to draw spirits, and Chapman asked him if he would try to draw Dr. Lang. When Chapman showed Mrs. Pickering the sketch, she immediately recognized it as her old Doctor Lang. The sketch also closely matched a photograph of Dr. Lang that Chapman discovered in an old medical book. Also, by scouring through the records at the Middlesex hospital, and of the board of Surgeons, it was possible to identify that Dr. Lang really had existed. The records said he was William Lang, born on December 28th 1852 in Devon to the son of a wealthy merchant who had sent him to Moravia boarding School in Lausanne, Switzerland. At the age of 18, Lang had then trained as a doctor at the London Hospital, where he qualified as a Member of the Royal College of Surgeons. He became a Fellow five years later. During his career he was a house physician and surgeon, as well as a teacher of anatomy. He specialized in optometry and became assistant surgeon at the Central London Ophthalmic Hospital, then he transferred to the Middlesex Hospital. In 1880 he had a son, followed by a daughter. He lived with his wife in Wood Green, a north London suburb, until they moved to Chiswick in west London. Dr. Lang carried out important medical research as well as surgery, and he developed ‘Lang’s drops,’ which was a solution of cocaine and tropine to be used in eye operations. His book of 1895 also went on to be issued to ophthalmology students. He created ‘twin knives’ for use in cataract operations and pioneered many treatments which would go on to be used as best practise. He was highly regarded and liked by all who knew him. His son Basil followed in his footsteps and also became a surgeon. In fact, father and son sometimes worked together in the operating theatre. Sadly, Basil Lang caught pneumonia in 1928 and passed away before Dr. Lang died. When George Chapman died in 2006, a Daily Telegraph obituary said, ‘George Chapman, who died on August 9 aged 85, was said to be one of Britain’s most remarkable healers; for 60 years he treated patients from all walks of life, including celebrities and members of the medical profession, by going into a state of trance and allowing the spirit of William Lang to “operate” through him,’ whose, ‘cultured tones from beyond the grave were a stark contrast to those of the Liverpudlian fireman through whom he spoke.’ Dr. Lang’s daughter Lyndon, and his grand-daughter, Susan Faitlough, both confirmed that the voice coming out of George Chapman’s mouth was Dr. Lang’s. Both said not only were his speech and mannerisms just as they remembered, but Dr. Lang gave information on people and places and events that George Chapman could not have possibly known about. Mrs. Susan Faitlough, Dr. Lang’s granddaughter once said, “To my great horror, or rather stupefaction, the man who was in this room was indisputably my grandfather. It was not him physically, but it was his voice, his behaviour. It was unquestionable. He spoke to me and evoked precise events of my childhood.” Lang’s daughter was so convinced she was speaking to her dead father that twice a month for many years she asked Chapman to hold seances at a private members club in London. She would invite former colleagues and old friends of Dr Lang to attend. After Dr. Lang’s daughter had watched George Chapman carry out his healing sessions, she said, “I can truthfully say that the William Lang who operates through the body of George Chapman is without a doubt my father.”
Of the thousands of patients treated by Dr. Lang from the afterlife through the hands of George Chapman, they included an 80-year-old lady living in Paris by the name of Madame Germaine Petit-Jean. It was 1974 and she had gone to her doctor about a growth in her left breast. Her doctor had sent her for hospital tests, which sadly confirmed that she had cancer and would need an operation. The operation was scheduled for a few weeks-time, but meanwhile she came to hear about Chapman and his spirit work through friends. She was greatly concerned about having an operation at her age, and so she felt she had nothing to lose by making an appointment to see Mr Chapman; although later in a letter to Mr. Chapman she let her true feelings be known, when she wrote, ‘I would have preferred to have the operation than to consult you!’ But her friends had been so insistent she should see him that she went ahead and arranged to visit Chapman. He was only offering appointments in Switzerland at the time, and so Madame Petit made the journey to see him there and had two appointments with him during her brief stay. Chapman later wrote, ‘She arrived back in France cured of her cancer. The growth in her left breast had disappeared. The doctors were -.’ This was just one of Chapman’s early healings. A Mr. Guilgars, also living in France, was healed of an eye tumour. Both patients were happy to write testimonials for Chapman. Another patient was a Mr. Joseph Tanguy who was diagnosed with a brain tumour. An operation had only succeeded in removing a small part of it because to take any more of the tumour out was far too dangerous. He was given 6 months to live. However, his doctor, through a friend, came to hear of Chapman and he advised Mr. Tanguy to visit Chapman. Before Tanguy came to see him, Chapman started giving distance healing to him. Then, when Tanguy came for his appointment, Dr. Lang, in spirit, got to work on him. A series of three healing treatments were given to Tanguy over a number of weeks. When a subsequent EEG examination took place in hospital, it was observed that there was a considerable improvement in Tanguy’s condition. Further distance healing was sent to him by Chapman and eventually another EEG determined that the tumour had completely vanished! Tanguy’s physician Dr. S. later wrote a testimonial vouching for the healing saying, ‘The results of Dr. Lang’s work are really exceptional, and in one case, Mr. Tanguy’s, miraculous. I have therefore complete trust in sending to him those whom all known therapies have failed, and I also believe, as does Dr. Lang, that spiritual healing cannot be separated from physical healing.’ Soon, Chapman would have a team of nine typists answering all the letters he received requesting appointments with him, although Chapman insisted on opening every letter himself personally. Dr. Lang explained to Chapman how the healing took place, how it was all possible; “The fact is, we are all spiritual beings… our bodies are like spiritual overcoats… the ‘etheric body’ acts as a go-between for the physical and spirit bodies.” Dr. Lang explained that we have three bodies – the physical, the spiritual, and the etheric. “The spiritual body shapes itself around the human body, taking on the same appearance. The etheric is the go-between body, and it supplies us with energy.” If you were to develop a tumour, the tumour would also show in your spirit body too. Your spirit body is the real you, the non-physical you. Dr. Lang said that people think the mind is in the brain. That is like confusing the typist with the typewriter, he said, or the musician with the violin. When Dr. Lang performed his healings, he worked on the spirit body of a person, he explained, and the healing would then trickle into the person’s physical body.
Among the many thousands of people treated by Chapman and the dead doctor was the famous writer of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Ronald Dahl. Another case of a healed patient involved a sceptical journalist called Burnard Hutton, who was so impressed that he would go on to write the book ‘Healing Hands,’ based on his uncanny experience with Chapman and Dr. Lang. It all began when Hutton visited his doctor, who told him that he was going blind from “non-paralytic poliomyelitis.” Upon receiving this devastating diagnosis, Hutton’s wife, having heard about Chapman’s work, persuaded Hutton to book an appointment. As a last resort, and purely to please his wife, Hutton agreed. Before his arrival at Chapman’s sanctuary, Hutton had told nothing to Chapman about his medical condition. This was standard procedure for Chapman. He never inquired why a patient was booking an appointment, and never asked for any personal details about them. For one thing, he was far too busy, needing a team of nine typists just to handle his thousands of letters each week, and for another, he had no medical training or knowledge anyway, so it wouldn’t help if he knew what was wrong with them. Besides which, once the patient entered Chapman’s treatment room, Chapman would drift off into a trance and Dr. Lang would take over! When Hutton arrived, he was quick to observe that Chapman appeared to be in a trance already, because he didn’t open his eyes at all. This was all very strange to Hutton, and his shock was compounded further when suddenly a very clipped, upper-class and obviously well-educated voice began to come out of Chapman’s mouth. It was so distinctly different to the working-class Liverpudlian accent of former fireman and Marine, Chapman. The voice declared that the lenses in Hutton’s glasses were of a -18 strength, and that as a child Hutton had a splint operation on both eyes. With Chapman’s eyes still closed, the voice continued, stating that a virus had brought on Hatton’s current illness, and that Hutton’s doctor believed it to be a non-paralytic type of polio myelitis. The voice added that Hutton now also had an undiagnosed and very serious virus affecting his liver. Hutton would later say, “If I’d been amazed before, I was speechless now. I had not told Chapman anything about my own doctor, nor had I mentioned being ill…” As Hutton lay on the treatment bed, the voice of Dr. Lang then announced that he would begin to operate on Hutton’s eyes! “You may hear me talking,” said Dr. Lang, “Calling out names and asking for instruments, but don’t be alarmed. I shall be assisted in this operation by my son Basil and various other colleagues. You won’t be able to see them because they have passed into spirit. You won’t feel any pain.” If I had been Hutton at this point, I think I would have run, but to Hutton’s credit, he stayed there on the treatment bed and the operation commenced. George Chapman began to move his hands, hovering them over Hutton’s eyes, and Hutton could hear Chapman clicking his fingers and making odd movements above him. Then, said Hutton, “Incredible as it may seem, I experienced the physical sensation of incisions being made; painless, but nonetheless capable of being felt. He did not touch me, yet a little later I felt as though he was stitching up the wounds.” When it was all over, Hutton sat up, quite understandably feeling a bit dazed. Suddenly, he realized he could barely see. As he looked around the room, he could barely distinguish between light and dark now. What was he going to do? Would this be permanent? In absolute shock, Hutton made it back to his car, where his wife sat patiently waiting for him. Hutton rued the moment he’d agreed to his wife’s suggestion to visit Chapman. This was a disaster – he was worse off than when he’d walked in and now – he was practically blind! He felt disoriented and he couldn’t stop shaking. As his wife drove them away from Chapman’s home, Hutton sat in the passenger seat in silence, dread and panic. About 10 minutes into the drive, as he gazed almost blind now out of the car window, very slowly he noticed that he could see the shape of a tree. “I thought it was my imagination, but it sharpened and came into focus. First, I could distinguish the large branches, then the smaller ones, and finally the naked winter twigs. I closed my eyes in disbelief. When I opened them again, I noticed that the windscreen was dirty and needed wiping.” He exclaimed aloud in amazement and joy. Not only had his vision come back, but he now no longer needed his -18 glasses. He could see everything, in minute detail.
As a result of his remarkable healing, Hutton felt driven to go on to collect testimonies from many of Chapman’s other patients who had also been miraculously healed by Dr. Lang, and as a result were no longer suffering from an array of disabilities, diseases and even terminal illnesses.
Chapman described how the healings were facilitated. He said he would close his eyes and drift off into a trance, like a kind of daydream, and then he would find himself reaching for invisible medical instruments in order to perform “surgery,” even though no real scalpels were in the room with him, and of course, Chapman had no medical training whatsoever! This is just like the other ‘psychic surgeons’ I have personally known, been treated by, and described in my previous book ‘Proof of the Afterlife.’ Yes, there are a few fakes out there, as there are con artists in all walks of life, but when you have been to see as many healers as I have, and experienced their sessions, it becomes possible to weed out the phoney ones; especially when the most mind-blowing things have happened to me at the genuine ones, as I’ve described in my earlier book. Funnily enough, I’ve got to know another ‘psychic surgeon’ called Brian Walsh, an Englishman who works out of Portugal. Talking to him one day recently, I asked him if he was aware of what spirits were working through him to give the healing to his patients, and he replied that he wasn’t sure, but the spirits had mentioned the name “Dr. Lang!” I asked him if he knew who this was, and he replied that he had no idea! Shortly I will describe Brian Walsh in more detail, but returning to Dr. Lang and Chapman, when Hutton asked Dr. Lang to explain how spirit healing was carried out, Dr. Lang said he would give a simplified version that could be understood by the layman. “The healing takes place upon the patient’s spirit body, which brings about a change in the physical body…” The spirit body, Lang explained, exists just outside the physical body and is ‘wrapped around’ the physical body. Although it cannot be seen by people who are not clairvoyant, it is the same as the physical body apart from being comprised of a different ‘texture’, and it does not die like the physical body does. Dr. Lang explained that he could see this spirit body and the diseases within it, because it reflected the physical body and the diseases within it. This, along with Dr. Lang’s ability to see a person’s aura, enabled him to easily assess a person’s state of illness, he said. “I can also see the person’s aura, or reflected light, which is constantly moving and changing colour, and exists about two inches from the body… Each organ, when healthy, reflects a definite colour in the aura, but when the organ becomes diseased, the reflection changes colour.”
Dr. Lang explained that when he carried out ‘psychic surgery’, he would utilize “healing vibrations of divine source – coming directly from God”, along with “spirit power”. Dr. Lang said these were the same vibrations Christ and clerics of all religions had used when they had carried out healing. Dr. Lang added that he did not work alone but had a team of dead doctors and surgeons working with him to assist in his spirit surgery, including his deceased son Basil. In fact, after George Chapman died in 2006, his son Michael, who had grown up watching and helping his father in the treatment room, began working with Dr. Lang’s deceased son Basil, to continue the legacy of the spiritual healing partnership to this day! Michael Chapman now works exactly as his father George did, except that he is assisted by the spirit of Basil. Dr. Lang continued to explain that he used ‘spirit’ instruments – like a surgeon would do, but that it was far easier to operate on the ‘spirit body’ than a physical body. Afterall, there was no blood, no pain, no tissue healing needed when using the spirit body instead of the physical body.
Roy Stemmen, former editor of Psychic News also experienced a healing session with Dr. Lang. As Stemmen lay on the treatment bed, the voice of Dr. Lang told Stemmen that when he got older it was likely he would have trouble with his tear ducts. Stemmen had told Chapman nothing at all about himself; including about his health or that of his family’s, and they had never met before Stemmen arrived at Chapman’s house. Talking to Jeffrey Mishlove of New Thinking Aloud podcast, Stemmen explains that both his mother and his aunt suffered with tear duct problems, although Stemmen himself had no problems with his eyes, but both his mother and aunt had needed operations to have artificial tear ducts inserted into their eyes. Stemmen explains what happened when he went to see Chapman that day. “I first heard William Lang’s voice when I was in the waiting room. I was the first person he was going to see that day and I heard this huge voice echoing around the consulting room saying a prayer.” When Stemmen was ushered into the treatment room, “Lang spoke in a very cultured voice, he had a very nice bedside manner, often joked with patients, but it was like talking to a Victorian gentleman; he was clearly somebody that had lived in an earlier age and still had the manners and culture of that period. I’m not saying that George Chapman didn’t have those manners but out of trance, he was a very ordinary person, loved a good laugh and enjoyed a drink and a meal, was very sociable, but they were like chalk and cheese, two different people altogether. He was brought up in Liverpool. He didn’t have a thick Liverpudlian accent but it was a typical 20th Century accent of that period. He would sometimes stumble over a few words that he’d not come across before. He would never claim to have been highly educated, but Lang had quite a vast vocabulary and a great knowledge of the period of time when he was practicing on earth.” Stemmen also says he recommended Chapman to a well-known newspaper cartoonist called Colin Earl, who has drawn cartoons for various newspapers and magazines. Colin was suffering with a detached retina. So, Colin made an appointment. Stemmen says, “I remember him telling me that he was quite amazed when he mentioned to Dr. Lang that he was a cartoonist. Lang began talking about his favourite cartoonists from the late 18th and 19th century, that he’d used to enjoy seeing their work and that he knew one of them, which was quite amazing.” Dr. Lang carried out an operation on Colin’s eyes and then requested that Colin return in two weeks-time. In the second appointment, to Colin’s surprise, Lang didn’t mention or look at Colin’s eyes at all, but instead he poked and prodded the area around Colin’s heart, then told Colin that as soon as he got home, he must go immediately to see his doctor and ask for a check-up on his heart. “Colin was not happy with that at all. He came out of the clinic and told his companion, “The man’s a fraud. He’s not even looked at my eyes. He’s forgotten what he did or why I went there last time.” Colin and his companion went to the nearest pub and had a drink, then drove the long distance back home, with Colin in a very bad mood. Three days later, Colin had a heart attack and was rushed to hospital. He did survive but looking back, he realized that obviously Dr. Lang knew more than Colin had suspected at the time!” Stemmen says he now has in his possession an array of files full of testimonies from hospital doctors and general practitioners who referred their patients to Chapman for healing. It was Stemmen’s job, while working at Psychic News, to travel around and verify any testimonies that were given, in order that they could be fact-checked before going into publication in the magazine. “Some of them were absolutely astonishing in terms of having been told by medical professionals that there was nothing more that could be done for some of them, but Dr. Lang rose to the challenge and was able to!”