The Other Side
by The Right Reverend James A.Pike
New York: Doubleday & Company, Inc., 1968. Hardcover. 8vo. 398 pages. Black cloth with silver lettering. First edition.
If one is going to own a Bishop Pike signed first edition book it would be this title.
Book: Two damp stained areas on tear board, inside rear fixed endpaper. Some light flecking of the black cloth on the spine. Pencil notation verso of rear free endpaper. Interior is very good. Good to very good in a good dust jacket, not price-clipped. Please see the photos.
Jacket: The dust jacket has the $5.95 price on front flap. Chips at the top and bottom of spine panel. Some dampststain to rear jacket panel. See photos, please.
Inscription on the front free endpaper: ‘To John + Mina? (Greek letters) + Jim’
Quite uncommon to find this book in first edition and even more so to find one inscribed. In this instance to two people he knew. None listed anywhere.
First edition is stated on the verso of the title page.
Book jacket will be enclosed in a removable dust jacket protector (Mylar). Shipping price includes tracking and insurance and safe packaging. This book is priced accordingly as to condition and to it’s collectibility.
“Is it possible to communicate with the dead? Can we who are alive talk to those who are "on the other side"? If so, what would this say about the meaning of life and reality? The news has been widely headlined that Bishop James A. Pike- one of America's best-known clergymen- not only believes this is possible, but that he has in fact communicated with his son who committed suicide." (from the jacket)
James Albert Pike (February 14, 1913 – c.?September 3–7, 1969)was an American Episcopal bishop, prolific writer, and one of the first mainline religious figures to appear regularly on television.
His outspoken, and to some, heretical views on many theological and social issues made him one of the most controversial public figures of his time. He was an early proponent of ordination of women, racial desegregation, and the acceptance of LGBT people within mainline churches. Pike was the fifth Bishop of California. Late in his life he explored psychic experimentation in an effort to contact his recently deceased son.
In 1966, Pike's son Jim took his own life in a New York City hotel room. Shortly after his son's death, Pike reported experiencing poltergeist phenomena—books vanishing and reappearing, safety pins open and indicating the approximate hour of his son's death, half the clothes in a closet disarranged and heaped up. Pike led a public pursuit of various spiritualist and clairvoyant methods of contacting his deceased son to reconcile. In September 1967, Pike participated in a televised séance with his dead son through the medium Arthur Ford, an ordained minister in the Disciples of Christ church. Pike detailed these experiences in his book The Other Side.
In August 1969, Pike and Diane traveled to Israel, to perform research for a proposed book.
On September 2 they drove into the Judean Desert. In preparation for a book on the historical Jesus, they wanted to have a feeling for why Jesus would have gone out into that wilderness to fast and meditate for 40 days.
They were unprepared for the journey, having taken along only two Cokes and no water. When their rented car became stuck in a deep rut, the two were not able to extract it (neither knew how to use the car's jack).
After an hour of stressful efforts to get the car to move, they decided to walk toward Qumran, where they knew there would be water. What they did not know was that they were far south of Qumran in Wadi Mashash.
After two hours of walking in the very hot sun, Pike felt he had to rest. Diane was concerned that, without water, they would both die there so she determined to walk on to find help.
After ten long hours of climbing on the walls of the canyon and stumbling along a road under construction, she came upon a camp of Arab laborers. They gave her tea to drink until the foreman came and took her to the nearest army camp.
It took four days to find Pike’s body. He had tried to follow his wife and had fallen more than 60 feet down a steep canyon wall where he died. The probable date of his death is September 2; some sources cite it as between September 3 and 7.
He was buried in the Protestant Cemetery in Jaffa, Israel, on September 8, 1969.