Graham Hancock Recovering from Health Crisis, Says Negative Energy from Online Skeptics and Haters Contributed to Stroke, Coma
Self-described “alternative historian” Graham Hancock announced on his blog yesterday that he has recovered from a life-threatening stroke, seizure, and coma that had left him hospitalized and semiconscious for most of the last week. Hancock had begun experiencing seizures in May when he was wrongly diagnosed with a heart condition following a stroke. After a major seizure on August 14, Hancock lapsed into a coma, and medical personnel advised his family to prepare themselves for his death or severe brain damage. He escaped both, and doctors concluded that his seizures were caused by his decades of heavy use of sumatriptan, a medication for migraine headaches. Hancock took a sumatriptan shot every other day or so for twenty years. According to Drugs.com, current medical recommendations say that most users should limit themselves to four uses per month.
Hancock has a history of drug overuse, and he confessed several years ago to decades of chronic and heavy marijuana use.
It is of course shocking and horrifying that Hancock was so close to death, and I wish him the best in his recovery. However, I was equally shocked to find that Hancock blames skeptics and skeptical YouTube comments for contributing to his seizures and coma, essentially by harshing his buzz with negative energy:
A darkness that had been hanging over me for most of this year reached its peak intensity at the time of the heated debate that Randall Carlson and I participated in with skeptic Michael Shermer and establishment geologist Marc Defant on the Joe Rogan Experience in May (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFlAFo78xoQ). The focused hatred directed at me in the comments section in the first three weeks after the debate is hardly visible in the more recent comments but, at the time, it affected me energetically in a very bad way and my intuition is that it was a contributing factor in my health breakdown. Subsequently a researcher has looked into those early comments for me and established that a very large number of them were generated by a relatively small group of people using multiple aliases and often repeating the exact same phrases with the exact same spelling mistakes. I don’t know if this was a deliberate attempt to manipulate public opinion, or what it was, or who was behind it, but it certainly hit me hard! Hatred is a vile and terrible energy, doubly so because it damages not only those who it is focused upon but also those seduced into expressing it.
I hate to speak ill of someone who has suffered so badly, but what? First, the pot seems to be calling the kettle black, particularly given Hancock’s penchant for attacking those who disagree with him. Second, is Hancock really saying he was cyber-bullied nearly to death? While that might be understandable for children and teenagers who lack the emotional maturity to handle nasty comments, I can’t see how a senior citizen would be so devastated by internet comments as to blame them for contributing to his stroke and coma. I’ve faced death threats, comments so vulgar I cannot repeat them, and threatened lawsuits. I’m still here. I find it difficult to understand how YouTube comments could drive someone to the brink of death, particularly since Hancock has spent 20 years complaining about mean critics and has presumably faced nasty online comments before. Perhaps this explains his quickness to anger and his kneejerk defensiveness: He simply feels more strongly and has more emotional reactions to provocation.
Hancock says that his journey to the brink of death has expelled the dark energy of skepticism and has restored his positive energy flow. He speculated that while in a coma he might have ventured to the afterlife. Given that he presents himself as a guru of sorts (while denying it) the fact that he can now claim to have died and been resurrected after a journey to heaven can only carry bad tidings for the future of the Hancock “brand.” Perhaps he will lean in to guru status now.
I am an author and researcher focusing on pop culture, science, and history. Bylines: New Republic, Slate, etc. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
Enter your email below to subscribe to my newsletter, The Skeptical Xenoarchaeologist, for updates on my latest projects, blog posts, and activities, and subscribe to Culture & Curiosities, my Substack newsletter.
Terms & Conditions
Please read all applicable terms and conditions before posting a comment on this blog. Posting a comment constitutes your agreement to abide by the terms and conditions linked herein.