Silva, Edivaldo Oliveira

Silva, Edivaldo Oliveira (1930–1974)

(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

Edivaldo Oliveira Silva was a Brazilian psychic surgeon and healer. He worked as a taxidermist and school teacher. In 1962, at age thirty-two, he discovered his healing powers after visiting a sick neighbor named Dona Zelita. He said “(Dona) had gone temporarily insane, so I went to sit with her while they went to fetch a doctor. When we were alone together I suddenly went mad myself for about an hour. I was completely unconscious; a spirit took me over and I became violent. When I recovered, there were broken things all over the place, but the woman had got better.” He went on to perform psychic surgery for people. This was of the invisible variety, where nothing is seen to happen physically as the surgeon moves his hands about in the air over the patient, yet the patient feels something and is subsequently cured. Silva, coming out of trance, would have no memory of what had been done. Silva’s spirit guide, directing the surgery, was Dr. Calazans, a Spaniard. There were also other spirits: Pierre, a Frenchman; Johnson, a Londoner; and Dr. Fritz from Germany. Occasionally a Japanese, an Italian, and a Brazilian also put in an appearance.

In his twelve-year career as a psychic surgeon, Silva treated approximately 65,000 people and performed at least 10,000 operations. “I don’t invoke anything,” he said, “The spirits just come. I sit down and withdraw my own spirit, and Dr. Calazans takes over. There isn’t room for two spirits in one body you see.” His patients had included one marshal of the army, eight generals, and over fifty doctors. During his twelve years as a psychic surgeon, Silva studied both law and medicine, hoping to eventually qualify as a doctor.

Silva lived in Vitoria da Conquista in the state of Bahia, Brazil, but would drive 500 miles every other weekend to do his surgery in a Spiritist center in Rio de Janeiro. He once traveled to England to study taxidermy, and had also traveled to Argentina to demonstrate his psychic powers at La Plata University. He died in 1974 after a road collision with a truck.


McGregor, Pedro: The Moon and Two Mountains: The Myths, Ritual and Magic of Brazilian Spiritism. London: Souvenir Press, 1966
Playfair, Guy Lion: The Flying Cow: Research into Paranormal Phenomena in the World’s Most Psychic Country. London: Souvenir Press, 1975