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´╗┐Title: Genuine Mediumship or The Invisible Powers
Author: Atkinson, William Walker, 1862-1932
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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  | Transcriber's Note:                                        |
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Genuine Mediumship

OR

The Invisible Powers

By
SWAMI BHAKTA VISHITA
(Hindoo Master)

Author of Seership, the Science of Knowing the
Future

ADVANCED THOUGHT PUBLISHING CO.
812 W. Van Buren St., Chicago, Ill.

English Representatives
L. N. FOWLER & CO., 7 Imperial Arcade,
Ludgate Circus, London, England

Copyright, 1919 By ADVANCED THOUGHT PUBLISHING CO. Chicago, Ill.



CONTENTS


PART I.

NATURE'S FINER FORCES

Knowledge versus Faith. Supernormal, not Supernatural.
Supernormal, not Abnormal. The Prevailing Ignorance. Prejudice
Against the Unusual. Great Changes Impending. The Naturalness of
Occult Powers. The World of Vibrations. Super-sensible
Vibrations. Unseen Worlds. Interpenetrating Planes and Worlds.
Manifold Planes of Existence. Planes and Vibrations. The Higher
Senses of Man. The World of Sensation. A Senseless World. The
Elemental Sense. The Raw Material of Thought. The Evolution of
the Senses. Unfoldment of New Senses. Discovery of New Worlds. We
Sense Only Vibratory Motion. The Higher Planes of Nature. An
Appeal to Reason                                                       7

PART II.

MENTAL VIBRATIONS AND TRANSMISSION

The Higher Forces. Chitta, or Mind Substance. What Modern Science
Says. A Living Dynamic Focus. Dynamic Correlate of Thought.
Answer to Skeptical Critics. The World of Vibrations. Unchartered
Seas of Vibration. The Human Wireless Telegraph Instrument. A
Great Scientist's Theory. Human-Electro-Magnetism. Human
Etherical Force. The Brain-Battery. A Peculiar Organ. The Pineal
Gland. Transmission of Thought. A General Principle.
Transformation of Vibrations. Example of Electric Light. Example
of Wireless Telegraphy. Example of Light Waves. Transformation of
Mental Vibrations. Vibrational Attunement. In Tune with the
Higher Planes. Two Key-Words                                          31

PART III.

THOUGHT TRANSFERENCE

Involuntary Transmission of Mental Vibrations. Thought Waves.
Vibratory Thought Force. Mental Atmospheres. The Categories of
Thought. Mental Whirlpools. Mental Tidal Waves. Immunity to
Thought Influences. Mental Attunement. Voluntary Transmission of
Mental Vibrations. Voluntary Mental Influence. White Magic. Black
Magic. Base Use of Mind Power. The Secret of Witchcraft. Modern
Black Magic. The Explanation of Sorcery. The Power of
Fearthought. The Negative Pole. Voodooism Explained.
Self-Protection. Repelling Adverse Influences. Telepathic
Phenomena. Scientific Investigators. How Experiments are
Conducted. Private Experiments. Development of Telepathic Power.
"Mind Reading." Development Practices. The "Willing Game." Formal
Tests. Automatic Writing. Psychic Sensitiveness                       53

PART IV.

CLAIRVOYANCE AND KINDRED PHENOMENA

Clairvoyance Defined. The Phenomena of Clairvoyance.
Classification of Clairvoyant Phenomena. Psychometry. The
"Psychic Scent." Magnetic Affinity. Distant En Rapport. Psychic
Underground Explorations. Psychic Detective Work. How to
Psychometrize. Developing Psychometry. Varieties of Psychometry.
Psychometric "Getting in Touch." Psychometric Readings. Crystal
Gazing, etc. Crystals and Bright Objects. The Care of the
Crystal. How To Use the Crystal. The "Milky Mist." Classes of
Psychic Pictures. General Directions for Crystal Gazing.
Selection of Place, etc. Adjusting the Crystal. Time of Sitting.
Other Persons Present. Crystalline Vision. Physical Requirements.
Determining Time of Fulfillment. Two Classes of Visions. Time and
Space in Crystal Gazing. Direct Clairvoyance. Trance Conditions.
Clairvoyant Reverie. The Dawn of Clairvoyance. Methods of
Development                                                           79

PART V.

CLAIRVOYANCE: PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE

Present Clairvoyance. The Human Aura. The Prana Aura. The Auric
Colors. Thought Forms. The X-Ray Sense. Microscopic Vision. Space
Clairvoyance. The Psychic Telescope. Radio-Activity. Sensing the
Higher Vibrations. Viewing Distant Scenes. Time Clairvoyance.
Past Time Clairvoyance. The Mystery Seeing the Past. Analogies of
the Physical Plane. Thousand Year Old Light. Reading the Light
Waves. The Akashic Plane. The Akashic Records. Degrees of
Clairvoyant Vision. "The Memory of Nature." Involuntary
Clairvoyance. Future Time Clairvoyance. Seeing What Has Not Yet
Happened. Simple Prevision. The Nature of Time. The Oriental
Teaching. The Eternal Now. Absolute Time                            105

PART VI.

MEDIUMSHIP

What is Mediumship? Ancient Mediumship. Mediumship and Religious
Belief. The Ideals of Modern Spiritualism. Immortality
Demonstrated Through Mediumship. The Truth of Personal Survival.
The Gateway of Mediumship. The Mediumistic Character.
Mediumistic Sensitivity. The Higher Vibratory Forces. Psychic
Attunement. The Development of Mediumship. Unconscious
Mediumship. Mediumship and Individuality. Co-operation of Medium
and Spirits. Mediumship Not Dangerous. Rational Mediumship. The
"Home Circle." The Cure For Fraudulent Mediumship. Warning to
Young Mediums                                                        133

PART VII.

MEDIUMISTIC CONDITIONS

Physical Phenomena. "Psychic Force." Human Magnetism. "Zoether."
"Prana." Mental Phenomena. The Value of Phenomena. Trance
Condition Not Essential. Scientific Reports on Phenomena.
Phenomena Without Darkness. Test Conditions. Is Darkness
Necessary? Developing Circles. Impersonating Mediumship. The
Proper Mental Condition. Proof of Spirit Identity. The "Trance
Condition." Spirit Impersonation. Spirit Suggestion. Psychic
Attunement. Automatic Writing. Inspirational Speaking. Gradual
Development of Powers. Spirit Guides. No Loss of Individuality.
Mediumship Beneficial. Mediumship and the Bible                      153

PART VIII.

HOW TO DEVELOP MEDIUMSHIP

Who are Mediumistic? The Mediumistic Temperament. Is Mediumship
Desirable? Developing the Natural Power. Mediumship and Genius.
Spontaneous Mediumship. Mediumistic Flashes. Systematic
Development. The Development Circle. The Aspirational Attitude.
Natural Unfoldment. Persistent Watchful Waiting. Building Lines
of Communication. Developing Concentration. The Call for
Illumination. The Jacob's Ladder of Communion. What a Development
Circle Is. Forming the Development Circle. The Sitters in the
Circle. The Spirit Communication Code. The Matter of Time
Conditions. Opening the Seance. Developing a Medium. The
Personnel of the Circle. Changing the Sitters. Adding a Medium.
Reasons for Changes. Psychic Attunement. Pre-Test Manifestations.
Premature Tests. Forcing Tests. Spirit Directions. Questioning
the Spirits. Substance and Shadow                                    173

PART IX.

MEDIUMISTIC PHENOMENA

The Part Played by the Sitters. Result of Bad Sitters. Mental
Atmosphere of the Medium. The Mediumistic Mind. Mediumistic
"Stage Fright." The Psychic Telephone System. Interrupted
Communications. Some Difficulties of the Spirits. Difficulties
Overcome. The Psychic Triangle. Harmonious Relationship. The
Discord Note. Antagonistic Elements. The Open Mind. Spirits and
the Sense of Humor. Rhythmic Harmony. Retarding Factors.
Reasonable Demands of Spirits. Harmonious Conditions. The Channel
of Communication. The Role of the Spirits. Difficulties Among
Spirits. Disturbing elements. Impersonation Mediumship. True
Purpose of Mediumship. Gradual Development. Public Seances. Home
Circle Development. Undue Prolongation of Seances. Good Advice to
Young Mediums. Self-Protection for Mediums                           200

PART X.

EXPERIENCES IN THE CIRCLE

Signs of Spirit Presence. Spirit Rappings. Table Tippings. The
Spirit Signals. Flashes of Communication. Spirit Code-Signals.
Ouija Boards. A Homemade Ouija Board. Trance or Inspirational
Mediumship. Symptoms of Trance Conditions. The Entranced Stage.
Trance Phenomena. Entering the Trance. Advice to Trance Mediums.
Speaking Mediumship. Public-Speaking Under Control. Spirit Advice
and Counsel. Impersonating Manifestations. Incidents of
Impersonation. Incidents of Inspirational Mediumship. Value of
Identification. Fraudulent Claims of Identity. Guarding Against
Fraudulent Spirits. Spirit Jokers. A Typical Case of
Identification. Recalling Past Incidents. Identifying Property.
Identifying Historical Personages                                    229

PART XI.

HIGHER SPIRIT MANIFESTATIONS

Spirit Psychometry and Clairvoyance. Spirit Psychic Assistance.
Writing Mediumship. Incidents of Writing Mediumship. Developing
Writing Mediumship. Stead's Method and Results. Automatic Writing
vs. Inspirational Writing. Use and Abuse of Automatic Writing.
Advice to Writing Mediums. Drawing Mediumship. The Planchette.
How to Use the Planchette. Healing Mediumship. How To Heal by
Spirit Power. Materialization Mediumship. The Spirit Cabinet Is
Necessary. How To Make the Spirit Cabinet. How To Use the Spirit
Cabinet. Spirit Phosphorescence. Appearance of Materialized
Substance. Materialized Spirit Forms. Scientific Proof of
Materialization. How To Conduct a Materializing Seance. Trumpet
Mediumship. Spirit Playing on Musical Instruments. Independent
Slate Writing. The Slate Writing Circle. Spirit Paintings.
Practical Advice to Developing Mediums                               251



PART I

NATURE'S FINER FORCES


One of the most common mistaken conceptions of the average student of
the occult sciences, and of so-called "psychic phenomena" in general, is
that which may be expressed by the term "supernatural." This term, as
you know, is used to express the idea of "that which is outside of the
realm of Nature, and of Nature's laws."


Knowledge Versus Faith

As a matter of fact, as all the advanced students and teachers of the
occult doctrine know full well, we have no direct knowledge whatsoever
of anything that is "outside of the realm of nature, and of Nature's
laws." It is true that we may, by an act of faith, profess to believe in
powers and beings entirely apart from the great realm of Nature--in
fact, most persons do believe in such powers and beings in connection
with their formal religion--but their belief is entirely within the
category of Faith, and is not even pretended to be based upon actual
experience and phenomenal manifestation.

The moment that there appears any manifestation which is possible of
being known to, or experienced by, the human senses, ordinary or
extraordinary, that moment the phenomena and the immediate cause thereof
must be regarded as being properly classed in the category of "natural."
This is true not only of such phenomena as are perceived by means of our
ordinary five senses, but also of those which are perceptible only to
the highest powers of perception, or higher senses, which are latent in
all human beings but which are unfolded only in the case of a
comparatively few individuals of the race.

It should be clearly understood by all students of occultism or psychic
phenomena that man's knowledge and experience, normal or supernormal, is
confined to the realm of Nature. There is a "ring pass-not" around the
boundaries of the Kingdom of Nature which mortals cannot pass, no matter
how high may be their degree of development and advancement. Even those
great mystics whose writings are filled with the startling revelations
of "union with the Divine," and of "At-one-ment with Deity," are under
no illusion concerning this fact they know full well that only in so far
as Deity involves itself in Nature--wraps itself up in the garments of
Nature--can it be directly experienced by man, and thus actually known
by him.


Supernormal, Not Supernatural

Perhaps a clearer understanding of this important subject will be had if
we but substitute the term "supernormal" for that of "supernatural." The
term "supernormal" is not commonly employed, and but few know that such
a word is to be found in the dictionaries, much less know its meaning;
but a study of its meaning, and its adoption in our thinking, will serve
to give us a clearer conception of the true nature of many strange
phases of experience of which we have become conscious, either by
reasons of their manifestation by ourselves, or else by the
manifestation on the part of others. It will accordingly be well for us
to carefully examine this term and its meaning.

"Subnormal" means: "Beyond, above, or exceeding that which is NORMAL;
extraordinary, inexplicable perhaps, but NOT supernatural." Now, the
term "normal" means: "Conforming to a certain standard, rule, or type";
hence, anything that is "supernormal" is something that is ABOVE THE
USUAL PATTERN, RULE, OR TYPE.

There is an important distinction to be noted here, to-wit: a thing may
be OUTSIDE of the usual pattern, rule, or type, in the sense of being
INFERIOR TO or UNDER the ordinary standard, and in this case is known as
"ABNORMAL," the latter term being employed as a term of depreciation. On
the other hand, the "OUTSIDE of the standard" quality may consist of a
SUPERIORITY to the prevailing standard, and accordingly is entitled to
be classed in the category of the "SUPERnormal"--the prefix "SUPER"
meaning "ABOVE, OVER, HIGHER, etc."

It is important that the distinction be made clearly between the use and
meaning of these two terms, "abnormal" and "supernormal," respectively.
The first named denotes INFERIORITY, and the latter denotes SUPERIORITY.
This distinction may be more clearly apprehended by means of a concrete
example, as follows:

On our own plane of existence the senses of sight and hearing,
respectively, are included in the usual standard, pattern, and type of
sense normality--every normal person possesses these senses in a certain
general degree of power; hence, on this plane of existence, a person
born blind, or deaf, is spoken of as "ABNORMAL," that is to say, such a
person is DEFICIENT in regard to the sense powers.

On the contrary, let us imagine a plane of existence, in which the
great majority of individuals lack the power of sight and hearing,
respectively. On such a plane of existence, the occasional individual
who was born possessed of the powers of sight and hearing, respectively,
would be properly regarded as "SUPERNORMAL," that is to say, such a
person would be SUPERIOR to the ordinary run of individuals--above them,
in fact. The term "ABNORMAL" means MINUS the ordinary standard quality;
and the term "SUPERNORMAL" means PLUS the ordinary standard quality. And
yet both the "plus" and the "minus" would be "outside" the normal type,
though there is a difference as wide as that between the two poles, in
this "outsideness."


Supernormal, Not Abnormal

The above important statement concerning the distinction between the
"abnormal" and "supernormal" is not made merely for the purpose of
academic differentiation and classification. On the other hand, it is
made because there is a most pernicious tendency on the part of the
ignorant and unthinking portions of the public to regard and to classify
certain high phases of occult and psychic manifestation of power as
"abnormal," hence BELOW the standard; whereas, properly speaking, such
manifestations of power are far ABOVE THE STANDARD, and, hence, clearly
entitled to the term "supernormal."


The Prevailing Ignorance

The ignorant and unthinking attitude of certain portions of the general
public toward this class of phenomena is akin to that of a community of
blind and deaf persons, satisfied that their own "three sense" standard
is the highest possible one attainable by living creatures and that all
variation therefrom must be considered as "abnormal." In such a
community there would occasionally be born certain individuals possessed
of the senses of sight and hearing, in addition to the common three
senses possessed by the entire community. Judging by what we know of the
tendency of human nature in such cases, we are warranted in conjuring
that the ordinary run of persons in such a community would revile the
seeing and hearing individuals as "abnormal," and their possessors
therefore to be pitied, and perhaps shunned. Only the intelligent and
thoughtful members of such a community would be able to grasp the fact
that these exceptional individuals were really not only not "abnormal,"
and inferior to type, but that they were really "supernormal," and
superior to type.


Prejudice Against the Unusual.

Those to whom the above illustration may seem far-fetched, exaggerated,
and unwarranted, are asked to carefully consider the ignorant and
unthinking attitude which the great majority of the general public, at
least at first, present toward that most wonderful display of
supernormal powers, known as "occult" or "psychic," made by the few
highly developed individuals of the race who are able to manifest them
to some degree. These individuals are regarded as "queer," and
"strange," "unnatural," and "abnormal" by their ignorant and unthinking
neighbors and associates, just as the seeing and hearing exceptional
individuals were likewise so regarded by their blind and deaf neighbors
in the above illustration. And, here as in the illustration it is only
the few intelligent and thinking individuals of the community who
recognize that the departure from the standard type is in the direction
of advancement and gain, rather than of retrogression and loss--a plus
attribute, rather than a minus one. The illustration is startlingly true
and in accordance with the facts of the case, as many thoughtful persons
know only to well, and admit sadly.


Great Changes Impending

But it would be unjust and unfair to the general public were we to fail
to add to the above criticism the fact that there is underway a great
change in the public opinion regarding this important matter. More and
more persons are becoming interested in Nature's Finer Forces every day;
more are becoming more familiar with the phenomena manifested by the
gifted individuals possessing these wondrous powers; and more are coming
to realize that these powers are really latent in all of the members of
the human race, though lying dormant in the majority thereof, and may be
unfolded and brought into active manifestation by scientific methods of
training and development. But, even so, the student and teacher of this
great subject should carefully bear in mind the important distinction
above made between that which is "abnormal," and that which is
"supernormal"; and such should lose no opportunity in pointing out this
important distinction whenever the subject arises in conversation or
argument--for the propaganda of truth should be earnestly and vigorously
pursued, in order that the world may be liberated from its chains of
error.


The Naturalness of the Occult Powers

Returning to the subject considered in the opening paragraphs of this
book, namely, the NATURALNESS of the occult and psychic higher powers
and the manifestation thereof, we strongly advise all students of these
subjects to acquire a working knowledge of the place in Nature occupied
by these powers and their manifestations. A little scientific
information on this subject will render the student better able to
intelligently teach others concerning these matters, and also to
successfully defend himself when the ignorant and unthinking seek to
attack the things which are so dear to his heart, and so real and
evident to himself. Many, by reason of their lack of scientific
knowledge on these points, not only fail to make converts to their cause
of truth, but often really drive away persons who might otherwise be
interested. Many persons are really interested in and attracted to the
manifestations of the higher occult and psychic powers, but are fearful
of anything "unnatural" or "supernatural," and are disposed to be
frightened off by any suspicion of such qualities in things. These same
persons, if shown that the phenomena have a perfectly valid scientific
base in natural forces and laws, will throw aside their fears and will
become earnest investigators and students of this great subject. Hence,
as we have said, every teacher and student of this subject should know
the true scientific natural basis thereof; and in the following few
pages we shall endeavor to plainly, though briefly, present these to
you.


The World of Vibrations

Modern science furnishes abundant testimony to support and substantiate
the teachings of the ancient Hindu sages to the effect that everything
in the Universe is in constant motion, which is manifested by varying
rates, degrees, and modes of vibration. The modern scientists, alike
with the ancient occultist, knows that the differences between the
things of the Universe arise mainly from the different rates, modes, and
degrees of the vibrations manifested in the things themselves. If we
change the vibration of a thing, we practically change the manifested
nature of that thing. The difference between solid ice, liquid water,
semi-gaseous vapor, and gaseous steam is simply the difference caused by
various rates of vibration caused by heat. The difference between red
and blue, green and violet, is simply that caused by varying rates of
vibration. Light and heat, as well as sound, depend for the differences
upon rates of vibration.


Super-Sensible Vibrations.

Moreover, as every text book on science informs us, there are sounds too
low as well as those too high for the human ear to register, but which
are registered by delicate instruments. Again, there are colors beyond
the place of red, at one end of the visible spectrum; and others beyond
the place of violet at the other end of that spectrum, which the human
eye is unable to register and detect, but which our apparatus in the
laboratory plainly register. The ray of light which registers on the
photographic plate, and which causes sunburn on our skin, is too high a
rate of vibration for our eyes to perceive. Likewise the X-Rays, and
many other of the finer rays of light known to science are imperceptible
to the unaided human vision--they are actually "dark rays" so far as the
human eye is concerned, though man has devised instruments by means of
which they may be caught and registered.


The Higher Vibrations

The vibrations of magnetism and electricity are imperceptible to our
sight, though they may be registered by the appropriate apparatus; and
if we had the proper sense of apparatus to perceive them, these rays of
vibratory force would open up a whole new world to us. Likewise, if we
could increase our power of hearing-perception, we would seem to be
living in a new world of sights and sounds now closed to us. Reasoning
along the same lines of thought, many great thinkers have held that
there is no reason for doubting the possible existence of other
world-planes of being, just as real and as actual as the one upon which
we live, and move, and have our being, but which is forever invisible to
the ordinary human sight and senses; the apparent nothingness of such
worlds arising solely from the great difference in the rates of
vibrations between the two planes of being.


Unseen Worlds.

Listen to what careful thinkers have said concerning the possibility of
entire worlds existing in the same space occupied by us, but of which we
are unconscious by reason of our failure to sense their vibrations: One
says, "All our sensations are due to the impact upon our sense-organs of
vibrations in some form. Variations in the strength and rapidity of
these vibrations constitute the difference in our perceptions. Our range
of response is but a limited one. Some vibrations are too rapid and some
too slow to affect our senses, and therefore we have called to our aid
various mechanical contrivances which enable us to recognize existences
which would otherwise remain unknown. But it is still conceivable that
there may be, and doubtless are, conditions of vibratory energy that
escape us, and which, if we could develop finer senses, would yield
wonderful results and extensions of our power and knowledge. Today,
indeed, we are coming into contact with forces, possibilities, and
personalities which amount to a revelation of a new universe of things."


Interpenetrating Planes and Worlds.

Another says: "It is true that 'things are not what they seem'; but
everything seems to be 'thus and so' to us only because of its
particular plane of being, and that plane of being is determined by its
vibrations. On one plane there is a certain vibratory value or speed;
on another plane, a different one; but a plane is not a place, but a
state, and so it is possible that two utterly different planes of being
might co-exist in the same place and be entirely unknown to one another.
That may seem absurd, but it is a scientific truth, and many authorities
have endorsed the same."

Another says: "There may be, right here and now, passing through us and
this world, some planet invisible to us, with mountains, oceans, lakes,
rivers, cities, and inhabitants: and yet we know absolutely nothing of
their existence." Another says: "Some students of the occult find it
difficult to grasp the idea of a number of manifestations, each having
its own rate of vibration, occupying the same point of space at the same
time. A slight consideration of the phenomena of the physical world
would perhaps aid such persons in assimilating the concept in question.
For instance, as every student of physics knows, a single point of space
may contain at the same time vibrations of heat, light of many shades,
magnetism electricity, X-Rays, etc., each manifesting its own rate of
vibration, land yet none interfering with the others."

Another says: "Every beam of sunlight contains many different colors,
each with its own degree of vibration, and yet none crowding out the
others. By the use of the proper forms of laboratory apparatus each kind
of light may be separated from the others, and the ray thus split up.
The difference in colors arises simply from the different rates of
etheric vibrations. Again, it is possible to send many telegrams along
the same wire, at the same time, by using senders and receivers of
different vibratory keynotes. The same thing has its corresponding
analogy in the case of the wireless telegraphy. So you see, even on the
physical planes we find many forms of vibratory energy manifesting on,
in, and at the same point of space at the same time, without interfering
one with the other."


Manifold Planes of Existence

The ancient occult teachings have ever insisted upon the presence of
numerous planes of existence, of which our own particular plane is but
one. And all of these numerous planes are equally within the realms of
Nature; none of them being supernatural. And there is always found to
exist a correspondence between these several planes of manifestation;
and, under supernormal conditions, a certain degree of possible
communication between them. Each of these planes has numerous
subdivisions and subplanes, the divisions being according to the rule of
"sevens," as follows: there are seven grand planes, and each of these
are subdivided into seven secondary planes, and each of these into seven
tertiary planes, and so on until the division has been made seven times.

The student of occultism, particularly at the beginning of his studies,
experiences difficulty in comprehending just what is meant by the term
"plane" as employed in the occult teachings. His first impression,
usually encouraged by the use of the dictionary, is that each "plane" is
one of a series of strata or layers, above and below which are present
other layers or strata. Even after the student progresses in his
understanding of the subject, this original picture of material layers
and strata tends to persist in his thought on the subject. The error, of
course, arises from his original conception of the planes, layers, or
strata as being composed of gross material matter, whereas, as a matter
of fact, only one of the many planes is so composed. When one stops to
think that even the grossest form of matter is itself composed of
vibrations of energy (for science teaches that all matter is but energy
at the last); and that all other forms of material substance is likewise
so composed of vibrations of energy; then one is on the road to the
discovery of the real state of affairs. Then he begins to realize that
instead of the planes of being rising one above the other in the scale
of their fineness, they are graded according to their degree of
vibratory energy, and each may actually occupy the same space as all the
others. In short, the "planes" are not strata or layers of "matter" at
all, but are simply different states of vibration of energy; and that
which we know as "matter" is simply one (and a very low one) of the many
forms of such vibrations.

From the above, it is seen that the various planes of being are not
distinguished by spatial position; they do not lie one superimposed on
the other, like layers or strata of matter. Instead, they interpenetrate
each other in the same limits of space. A single point of space may
accommodate the manifestations of each and all of the seven great planes
of being, and all the subdivisions, and sub-divisions (sevenfold in
division) at the same time. The old occultists impressed this and other
facts upon the minds of their pupils by the oft-repeated aphorism: "A
PLANE OF BEING IS NOT A PLACE OF BEING, BUT A STATE OF BEING." And the
"state of being" is simply a certain manifestation of vibratory energy.
With these ideas firmly fixed in the mind, the student is less apt to
wander astray from the facts of the case.


Planes and Vibrations

To those who may be disposed to regard the above statements concerning
the "planes of being" as somewhat visionary, theoretical, or imaginary,
we would say: "Go to modern science, and verify this statement." The
following quotation from a writer on the subject will serve to
illustrate this fact, viz.: "We are apt to think that we are familiar
with every kind of matter in existence, but such is not the case. We are
familiar with only a few forms of matter. Spectrum analysis shows us
that on certain fixed stars there are forms of matter far different from
matter as we know it on this planet. On some stars this unknown matter
appears to be of a much lower form of vibration than that manifested by
terrestrial matter; while on others, there appears to be a much higher
vibratory rate than even that manifested by the most subtle forms of
ultra-gaseous matter known to us here. Even on our own globe we can
distinguish between several great class of matter. In addition to the
forms called 'solid,' 'liquid,' and 'gaseous,' respectively, science now
recognizes a fourth plane of matter known as 'ultra-gaseous' matter, and
there are indications of several even finer states of matter, known
under the general term of 'radiant matter.' In fact, modern science sees
'radiant matter' apparently fading away into 'radiant energy.'"

In view of the facts of modern science concerning the different planes
of substance, matter and energy, it is mere stupidity that ventures to
question the possibility of the existence of great plane of being and
life beyond the range of the ordinary senses of man--planes surrounding
us on all sides, occupying the same space as we do, yet unseen by us,
and we largely unseen by those dwelling upon such planes.


The Higher Senses of Men.

There are found persons who, while admitting the possibility of other
and finer planes of being and life, yet question the possibility of
communication between these planes of existence. They say, with
apparently sound logic, "How is it possible for the human being, with
his ordinary senses, to 'sense' things or being, dwelling on finer
planes of being?" If this were all that there is to the question, we
might well echo "How, indeed?" and agree with the critic. But, this is
not all that there is to it--not even the beginning of the end of the
tale. For not only may things on the finer planes become perceptible to
human beings by means of the lowering of the vibrations of these finer
vibratory objects in certain ways, but human beings may develop and
cultivate an increased power in their senses of sight and hearing, and
thus raise their vibrations so as to "sense" the things of the higher
vibrations; and, still more, human beings may, and often do, develop
and cultivate certain latent powers of "sensing" which are inherent in
every one of us, and thus directly "sense" the sights and sounds of the
higher planes of existence, almost if not quite as clearly as they can
sense the objects and events of their own plane of existence. To
understand how this can be, it is necessary to carefully consider the
question of "sensing" in general, so as to understand just what enables
us to "sense" anything at all. Once understanding this, it is but a step
further to understand this SUPERNORMAL sensing referred to. Let us then
examine this matter of "sensing" in general.


The World of Sensation.

The reports of our sense organs are called "sensations." A sensation is
defined as "an impression, or the consciousness of an impression, made
upon the mind through the medium of a nerve or one of the organs of
sense. The term 'sense' is defined as 'a faculty possessed by animals of
perceiving external objects by means of impressions made upon certain
organs of the body, or of perceiving changes in the condition of the
body.' Our senses have been well said to constitute 'the doors to the
outside world.' Unless our attention is specially directed to the
subject, few of us even begin to realize how completely we are dependent
upon these 'doors' to the outside world" for our knowledge of that
outside world. It is only when we stop to imagine how completely shut
in, or shut out, we would be if all of our sense channels should be
destroyed, that we can even begin to realize just how dependent we are
upon our senses for our knowledge of the world in which we live, and
move, and have our being.


A Senseless World.

A writer on the subject has said: "Psychologists have pointed out to us
the fact that if a human being were born without sense organs, no matter
how perfect a brain he might have, his life would be little more than
that of a plant. Such a person would exist merely in a dreamlike state,
with only the very faintest manifestations of consciousness. His
consciousness would not be able to react in response to the impact of
sensations from the outside world, for there would be no such impact.
And as consciousness depends almost entirely upon the impact of, or
resistance to, outside impressions, his consciousness would be almost
entirely inactive. He would be conscious of his own existence, but would
probably never realize the fact fully, for he would have nothing else
with which to compare himself, and his self-consciousness would never be
aroused by contact with things outside of himself. Such a person would
not have even the memories of previous sensations or experiences to
arouse or heighten his consciousness or thought, and consequently he
would have no imagination to use. He would be, to all intents and
purposes, a living corpse. Helen Keller has only two doors of sensation
closed to her--the sense of sight and the sense of hearing. Touch,
taste, and smell, however were left to her; and each was quickened and
heightened in order to help so far as possible to perform the world of
the defective senses. The reaching of the consciousness of this girl is
considered by science to be akin to a miracle--yet only two senses were
missing. To appreciate the full meaning of the importance of the senses,
one has but to think of Helen Keller as having been also deprived of the
sense of touch."


The Elemental Sense.

Science informs us that all of the five senses of man, viz., the
respective senses of touch, sight, hearing, taste, and smell are but
modifications of one elementary sense namely the sense of touch; and
that the other senses have been gradually evolved from that one
elementary sense. This is seen to be the case when it is realized that
the only way that we "sense" the presence of an outside object--be that
object either a material substance, a vibration of the air, or an
etheric vibration of light--is by that outside object coming in contact,
directly or indirectly, with one or more of our sensory nerves, the
latter conveying the report of the contact to the brain, which
translates the sensation into what is called a "perception." This is
true of the sensations of touch, sight, hearing, taste, and smell, and
of senses higher than these and which as yet are not recognized by
science. Consequently, the consciousness of the presence of an outside
thing arises from contact with that outside thing through the channel of
the sense of touch, or of some of its more complex evolved phases.


The Raw Material of Thought.

From what has been said, it is seen that we can know only those things
concerning the outside world which are capable of being reported to us
by means of sense impressions, simple or complex--all of our thought
regarding the world is made up from "the raw materials of thought" which
psychologists have termed sensations. Consequently, if an individual is
deprived of one or more of his ordinary senses, his knowledge of the
outside world is decreased to just that extent. And, likewise, if the
individual were to be given one or more additional senses, his knowledge
of the world would be increased in the same ratio. The same result, at
least in a certain degree, would be attained if the existing senses of
the individual were to be increased in power so as to register higher
rates of vibration than they now consciously register and record.


The Evolution of the Senses.

This subject of increased sense-powers has always been a fascinating one
for the psychologists, and much speculation has been indulged in
concerning the increased consciousness of mankind were additional senses
opened to it. We ask you to carefully consider the following quotations
from psychologists possessing the "scientific imagination."

A psychologist says: "All the senses have been evolved from the
elementary sense of Touch. All of our senses are but modified,
specialized, and more complex forms of the sense of Touch. The
elementary life-forms possessed merely the sense of Touch; and that but
faintly developed--but a faint sensitiveness to outside impressions.
Then developed the sense of Taste, from which later evolved the sense of
Smell, the latter even now being closely associated with the former.
Then evolved the sense of Hearing, or the consciousness of the contact
of air vibrations called 'sound.' Then evolved the sense of sight, or
the consciousness of contact with the light waves of the other. And it
is not impossible, or even improbable, that the human race will
eventually develop other and more complex senses--in fact, many even now
claim that the development of extra senses is now under way in the race,
and that the same are now manifesting the presence and their powers in
exceptional cases."


Unfoldment of New Senses

The same writer continues as follows: "Even as it is man is able to
perceive only a limited number of sound vibrations--there are many sound
vibrations above and below his scale, and which he is unable to
perceive, but which are registered by delicate instruments. Likewise,
man is able to perceive only a limited range of light vibrations, there
being enormous fields of such vibrations above and below his range.
Again, man is unable to sense electrical waves, or magnetic
waves--though, theoretically, he should be able to sense these as well
as light waves, the difference between these respective fields of
etheric vibrations being simply different rates of vibration. Imagine
what a new world would be opened to man if he could sense the waves of
electricity. In that case he could 'see' things as far away from him as
the waves of electricity could travel, and even though solid objects
intervened, as in the case of the X-Rays. In such a case a man might
actually 'see' things at the other side of the world, by means of
'wireless electrical waves.' Theoretically these things are possible,
providing that man's optical nerves are rendered more sensitive, or
provided that he evolves a new set of sensory nerves and instruments of
impression."


Discovery of New Worlds.

Another psychologist says: "If a new sense or two were added to the
present normal number in man, that which is now the phenomenal world for
all of us might, for all that we know, burst into something amazingly
different and wider, in consequence of the additional revelations of
these new senses." Another authority has said: "It does not seem at all
improbable that there are properties of matter of which none of our
senses can take immediate cognizance, and which other beings might be
able to see in the same manner that we are sensible to light, sound,
etc." Another writer has said: "We know that our sensory nerves are
capable of transmitting to the brain only a part of the phenomena of the
universe. Our senses give us only a section of the world's phenomena.
Our senses usher only certain phenomena into the presence of our minds.
If we had three or four new senses added, this might appear like a new
world to us; we might become conscious of a vast number of phenomena
which at present never have any effect upon our nervous system. It is
not possible to imagine a race of beings whose senses do not resemble
ours, inhabiting other worlds."


Transcendental Senses

Another writer has drawn an interesting picture, which is based upon a
conjecture which is scientifically valid, as follows: "The late
Professor James once suggested as a useful exercise for young students a
consideration of the changes which would be worked in our ordinary world
if the various branches of our receiving instruments happened to
exchange duties; if, for instance, we heard all colors, and saw all
sounds. All this is less mad than it seems. Music is but an
interpretation of certain vibrations undertaken by the ear; and color is
but an interpretation of other vibrations undertaken by the eye. Were
such an alteration of our senses to take place, the world would still be
sending us the same messages, but we should be interpreting them
differently. Beauty would still be ours, though speaking in another
tongue. The birds' song would then strike our retina as pageant of
color; we should see all the magical tones of the wind, hear as a great
fugue the repeated and harmonized greens of the forest, the cadences of
stormy skies. Did we realize how slight an adjustment of our own organs
is needed to initiate us into such a world, we should perhaps be less
contemptuous of those mystics who tell us in moments of transcendental
consciousness they 'heard flowers that sounded, and saw notes that
shone'; or that they have experienced rare moments of consciousness in
which the senses were fused organs is needed to initiate us into such a
world into a single and ineffable act of perception, in which color and
sound were known as aspects of the same thing."


We Sense Only Vibratory Motion.

In assimilating the strange and wonderful conceptions of the
psychologists above quoted, concerning the possibility of a new world of
sensation arising from the possession of new channels of sense
impression, we must never lose sight of the basic fact that all
SENSATIONS RESULT FROM CONTACT WITH VIBRATORY MOTION. An eminent
scientific authority has said regarding this: "The only way the external
world affects the nervous system is by means of vibratory motion. Light
is vibratory motion; Sound is vibratory motion; Heat is vibratory
motion; Touch is vibratory motion; Taste and Smell are vibratory motion.
The world is known to us simply by virtue of, and in relation to, the
vibratory motion of its particles. Those vibratory motions are
appreciated and continued by the nervous system, and by it brought at
length to the mind's perception."


The Higher Planes of Nature

In view of the facts and principles above set forth and considered, we
may begin to see that there is nothing "unnatural" in the hypothesis
that there may be reports conveyed to the consciousness of man by means
of higher vibrations than those of ordinary sound, or ordinary sight,
providing that man has either (1) highly developed his ordinary senses
of sight, hearing, or touch to a degree sufficiently high to register
these higher vibrations; or else has evolved and unfolded into
consciousness certain latent faculties of sense-impression which are
lying dormant in the great masses of mankind. In fact, the thoughtful
person will be forced to admit that this new knowledge of the nature of
sensations, and of its relation to vibratory motion, renders extremely
probable the truth of the great body of reports of such so-called
extra-conscious knowledge which the experience of the race has furnished
from the beginning of human history down to the present time. Such a
person will see that it is not a sign of "credulity" for a person to
accept such reports, so universally set forth; but that, rather, it is a
sign of "credulity" for a person to accept blindly the dogmatic
assertions of the materialistic sceptics to the effect that "there is no
such thing possible in the natural world, under natural world, under
natural laws--the whole thing is delusion or else deliberate fraud."
Such "know-it-all" persons are usually found to really "know much that
is not true," and to lack knowledge of much that is true, regarding
Nature, her realm and her laws.


An Appeal To Reason.

Concluding these statements, let us say that the student of this book
will find nothing contained within this book which is contrary to
Nature's laws and principles. He will nowhere in it be asked to suspend
the exercise of his reason, and to accept as facts things which violate
all of Nature's laws. Instead, he will find at each point full natural
explanations of even the most wonderful phenomena; and the appeal to
accept same will be made always to his reason, and not to his blind
faith or unreasoning belief. The student is urged to build his knowledge
of this important subject upon this solid rock of natural law and fact,
and not upon the shifting and sinking sands of mere dogmatic assertion
and appeal to assumed authority ancient or modern.



PART II

Mental Vibrations and Transmissions


In the category of Nature's Finer Forces must be included that class of
manifestations which are generally known as Telepathy, Thought
Transference, Thought Force, etc., all of which are based upon the fact
that there is present in all such mental states as Thought, Emotion,
Desire, etc., a certain rate of vibratory motion, which motion is
capable of being radiated from the mind of the person manifesting them
in such power and force that they may be registered with more or less
distinctness upon the minds of other persons are at a greater or less
distance from the first person. In the more common forms of its
manifestation, such mental force or power is known as Thought Force,
Mental Influence, etc., and in its more pronounced and less common
phases it is known as Telepathy, Thought Transference, etc., but the
basic principle is precisely the same in all of such cases, simple or
complex though their manifestations may be.


The Higher Forces.

We may say here, frankly and plainly, however, that the advanced
occultists regard this class of phenomena as comparatively simple and
elementary, and therefore not fully entitled to be included in the same
category with the higher phases of Nature's Finer Forces, such as, for
instance, Clairvoyance, Psychometry, Communication with the Higher
Planes, etc. But notwithstanding this, we are of the opinion that any
and every one of the finer forces of nature, i.e., any of the forces
which are over and above the plane upon which the ordinary senses of
man, normally developed, ordinarily function and operate, should be
placed in one general category of the Higher Forces of Nature,
particularly in a work of this kind designed for the instruction of the
general public upon these important subjects. Accordingly, these lesser
manifestations of the finer forces in the natural world shall be
carefully considered in this part of this book, so that the student may
become acquainted with the scientific principles upon which they are
based, and may be enabled to develop the power of manifesting such
powers if he choose to do so; and that he may understand the nature of
such forces and powers when they are manifested by other persons.


Chitta, or Mind Substance.

The Hindu Teachings hold that that which we call "Mind" is not an
intangible something different from anything else in Nature, but that,
on the contrary, it forms a part of Nature's general manifestation, and
is a substantial thing. The Hindus have given to this Mind Substance the
name of Chitta. Without going into metaphysical discussion, or entering
into technical details concerning this Mind Substance or Chitta, we may
say that the Hindus believe it to be one phase of the great
Manifestation which we call Nature--just as that which we call Matter
is another phase of Manifestation--and, like Matter, having its own
particular kind of force, or energy, its own rates of vibrations, and
its own attribute of radiating its vibratory force or energy over space.
Chitta manifests its activity in creating Thought, Emotions, etc., and
also in receiving impressions from the outside world which it translates
into perceptions and ideals. Chitta, or Mind Substance, is not regarded
by the Hindus as being identical with the Soul, or the Ego; but, on the
contrary, they regard it as being an instrument for the expression of
the activity of the Ego, or Soul, just as the Body is another kind of
instrument. Both Body and Mind are regarded as being intended for the
use of the Ego or Soul, and not as identical with the latter. We shall
not discuss these distinctions further in this book, this subject being
apart from the general field and scope of the present work.


What Modern Science Says.

There are many to whom this conception of the vibration energy of Chitta
or Mind Substance may seem strange. But such persons will be still more
surprised, perhaps, when they are told that modern science has
practically admitted the general truth contained in the Hindu teachings
concerning the same, though modern science seems to cloak the facts of
the case in technical terms so that the ordinary person is unable to
comprehend the real facts dwelling beneath these terms. To this latter
class we specially commend the following statement made by Professor
Ochorowicz, the eminent European scientist, a few years ago. Professor
Ochoriwicz says:


A Living Dynamic Focus.

"Every living being is a dynamic focus. A dynamic focus tends ever to
propagate the motion that is proper to it. Propagated motion becomes
transformed according to the medium it traverses. Motion always tends to
propagate itself. Therefore, when we see work of any kind--mechanical,
electrical, nervic, or psychic--disappear without visible effort, then
of two things, one happens, namely, either a transmission or a
transformation. Where does the first end, and where does the second
begin? In an identical medium there is only TRANSMISSION; in a different
medium there is TRANSFORMATION.

"You send an electric current through a thick wire. You have the
current, but you do not perceive any other force. But cut that thick
wire, and connect the ends by means of a fine wire, and this fine wire
will grow hot--there will be a TRANSFORMATION of a part of the current
into HEAT. Take a pretty strong current, and interpose a wire still more
resistant, or a very thin carbon rod, and the carbon will emit LIGHT. A
part of the current, then, is transformed into heat and light. The light
acts in every direction around about, first visibly as light, then
invisibly as heat and electric current. Hold a magnet near it. If the
magnet is weak and movable, in the form of a magnetic needle, the beam
of light will cause it to deviate; if it is strong and immovable, it
will in turn cause the beam of light to deviate. AND ALL THIS FROM A
DISTANCE, WITHOUT CONTACT, WITHOUT SPECIAL CONDUCTORS.


Dynamic Correlate of Thought.

"A process that is at once chemical, physical and psychical, goes on in
the brain. A complex action of this kind is propagated through the gray
brain matter, as waves are propagated in water. Regarded on its
physiological side, an idea is only a vibration, a vibration that is
propagated, yet which does not pass out of the medium in which it can
exist as such. It is propagated only as far as other vibrations allow.
It is propagated more widely if it assumes the character which
subjectively we call emotive. But it cannot go beyond without being
transformed. Nevertheless, like force in general, it cannot remain in
isolation, and it escapes in disguise.

"Thought stays at home, as the chemical action of a battery remains in
the battery; it is represented by its dynamic correlate, called in the
case of the battery a 'current,' and in the case of the brain, I know
not what; but whatever its name may be, it is THE DYNAMIC CORRELATE OF
THOUGHT. I have chosen the name 'dynamic correlate.' There is something
more than that; the universe is neither dead nor void.

"A force that is transmitted meets other forces, and if it is
transformed only little by little it usually limits itself to modifying
another force at its own cost, though without suffering materially
thereby. This is the case particularly with forces that are persistent,
concentrated, well seconded by their medium. It is the case with the
physiological equilibrium, nervic force, psychic force, ideas, emotions,
tendencies. These modify environing forces, without themselves
disappearing. They are imperceptibly transformed, AND IF THE NEXT MAN IS
OF A NATURE EXCEPTIONALLY WELL ADAPTED TO THEM, THEY GAIN IN INDUCTIVE
ACTION."


Answer to Skeptical Critics

The two most likely objections advanced against this conception by
sceptical critics are as follows: "(1) The mental vibratory motion, or
vibratory waves, are not known to science, nor recorded on scientific
instruments such as the galvanometer. What is the rate of such
vibrations, and what is their general character? (2) Granted the
existence of such vibratory energy, or thought-waves, how and by means
of what channel does the second person receive them from the first
person? How are they registered or recorded?" These objections are
capable of being met in a scientific manner, to the satisfaction of any
fair-minded critic or investigator. We shall now give you, briefly, the
gist of the answer of science to the aforesaid objections.


The World of Vibrations

It is true that the scientific instruments of the laboratory, such as
the galvanometer, do not record thought vibrations. This, because such
instruments are capable of registering and recording on certain rates
and modes of vibratory energy. Thought vibrations are registered only by
their appropriate instruments, namely, the Chitta of Mind substance of
living persons. As to the "general character and rate of vibration" of
these waves of mental force, we can only say that their general
character is that of "mental force" as opposed to "physical force."

As to their rate of vibration, we can only say that this is not
precisely known, not having as yet been definitely ascertained; but it
should be added that THERE IS PLENTY ROOM FOR THESE VIBRATIONS in the
great field of vibratory energy. Read the following paragraphs, and
decide this last matter for yourself.


Uncharted Seas of Vibration.

The following quotations from eminent scientists will serve to give the
student a general idea of the views of science upon the question of the
possibility of the existence and presence of vibratory energy of kinds
and characters as yet unknown to science:

The first scientist says: "There is much food for speculation in the
thought that there exists sound waves that no human ear can hear, and
color waves that no eye can see. The long, dark, soundless space between
40,000 and 400,000,000,000,000 vibrations per second, and the infinity
of range beyond 700,000,000,000,000 vibrations per second, where light
ceases, in the universe of motion, makes it possible to indulge in
speculation." The second scientist says: "There is no gradation between
the most rapid undulations or tremblings that produce our sensation of
sound, and the lowest of those which give rise to our sensations of
gentlest warmth. There is a huge gap between them, wide enough to
include another world of motion, all lying between our world of sound
and our world of heat and light. And there is no good reason whatever
for supposing that matter is incapable of such intermediate activity, or
that such activity may not give rise to intermediate sensations,
provided that there are organs for taking up and sensifying these
movements."

The third scientist says: "The knowledge we gain by experiment brings
home to us what a miserably imperfect piece of mechanism our bodies are.
The ear can detect the slow-footed sound vibrations that come to us at
the rate of between 40 and 40,000 a second. But the whole of space may
be quivering and palpitating with waves at all sorts of varying speeds,
and our senses will tell us nothing of them until we get them coming to
us at the inconceivable speed of 400,000,000,000,000 a second, when
again we respond to them and appreciate them in the form of light."

The fourth scientist says: "The first indications of warmth come to us
when the vibrations reach the rate of 35,000,000,000,000 per second.
When the vibrations reach 450,000,000,000,000 the lowest visible light
rays manifest. Then come the orange rays, the golden yellow, the pure
yellow, the greenish yellow, the pure green, the greenish blue, the
ocean blue, the cyanic blue, the indigo, and finally the violet, the
highest degree of light which the human eye can register, and which
occurs when the vibrations reach the rate of 750,000,000,000 per second.
Then come the ultra-violet rays, invisible to human sight but registered
by chemical media. In this ultra-violet region lie the X-Rays, and the
other recently discovered high degree rays; also the actinic rays which,
while invisible to the eye, register on the photographic plate, sunburn
one's face, blister one's nose, and even cause violent explosions in
chemical substances exposed to them, as well as act upon the green
leaves of plants, causing the chemical transformation of carbonic acid
and water into sugar and starches. These forms of 'dark light,' that
is, light too high in degree to be perceived by the human eye, are but
faint indications of the existence of still higher and still finer
vibrations of substance and energy."


The Human Wireless Telegraph Instrument.

Having seen that the first question of the sceptical critics is capable
of being answered in the scientific spirit, and by ideas based upon
scientific investigation, we now turn to the second question of the same
critics, viz.: "Granted the existence of such vibratory energy, or
thought-waves, how and by means of what channel does the second person
receive these from the first person? How are they registered or
recorded?" This same question is also implied in the concluding sentence
of one of the scientists above quoted, viz.: "There is no good reason
whatever for supposing that matter is incapable of such intermediate
activity, or that such activity may not give rise to intermediate
sensations, provided that there are organs for taking up and sensifying
these movements." Let us see what science has to tell us regarding the
provision of Nature for the reception and "sensing" of this class of
vibratory energy. And the easiest way to ascertain the report of science
regarding this important matter is to consider carefully what
representative leading scientists have said concerning the same in their
writings or public addresses. We call your attention to the following
quotations from such sources.


A Great Scientist's Theory.

Let us begin with that great master of modern science, Sir William
Crookes, the inventor of the celebrated "Crookes' Tubes," without which
the discovery of the X-Ray and Radio-Activity would have been
impossible. Several years ago, this eminent scientist, addressing the
Royal Society, at Bristol, England,--a gathering made up of
distinguished scientists from all over the world, most of the members
being extremely sceptical concerning occult phenomena--said to the
brilliant gathering: "Were I now introducing for the first time these
inquiries in the world of science, I should choose a starting point
different from that of old (where we formerly began). It would be well
to begin with Telepathy; with that fundamental law, as I believe it to
be, that thoughts and images may be transferred from one mind to another
without the agency of the recognized organs of sense--that knowledge may
enter the human mind without being communicated in any hitherto known or
recognized ways. * * * If Telepathy takes place we have two physical
facts, viz., (a) the physical change in the brain of A, the transmitter,
and the analogous physical change in the brain of B, the recipient of
the transmitted impression. Between these two physical events there must
exist a train of physical causes. * * * It is unscientific to call in
the aid of mysterious agencies, when with every fresh advance in
knowledge it is shown that ether vibrations have powers and attributes
abundantly able to meet any demand--even the transmission of thought.

"It is supposed by some physiologists that the essential cells of nerves
do not actually touch, but are separated by a narrow gap which widens in
sleep while it narrows almost to extinction during mental activity.
THIS CONDITION IS SO SINGULARLY LIKE A BRANLY OR LODGE COHERER [a
device which led to the discovery of wireless telegraphy] AS TO SUGGEST
A FURTHER ANALOGY. The structure of brain and nerve being similar, it is
conceivable that there may be present masses of such nerve coherers in
the brain, whose special function it may be to receive impulses brought
from without, through the connecting sequence of ether waves of
appropriate order of magnitude. Roentgen has familiarized us with an
order of vibrations of extreme minuteness as compared with the smallest
waves with which we have hitherto been acquainted; and there is no
reason to suppose that we have here reached the limit of frequency. It
is known that the action of thought is accompanied by certain molecular
movements in the brain, and here we have physical vibrations capable
from their extreme minuteness of acting direct upon individual
molecules, while their rapidity approaches that of internal and external
movements of the atoms themselves. A formidable range of phenomena must
be scientifically sifted before we effectually grasp a faculty so
strange, so bewildering, and for ages so inscrutable, as the direct
action of mind upon mind."


Human Electro-Magnetism

Professor Bain, another eminent authority, tells us: "The structure of
the nervous substances, and the experiments made upon the nerves and
nerve-centres, establish beyond a doubt certain peculiarities as
belonging to the force that is exercised by the brain. This force is of
a current nature; that is to say, a power generated at one part of the
structure is conveyed along an intervening substance and discharged at
some other part. The different forms of electricity and magnetism have
made us familiar with this kind of action."

Professor Draper, another eminent authority, says: "I find that the
cerebrum is absolutely analogous to in construction to any other nervous
arc. It is composed of centripetal and centrifugal fibres, having also
registering ganglia. If in other nervous arcs the structure is merely
automatic, and can display no phenomena of itself, but requires the
influence of an external agent--the optical apparatus inert save under
the influence of light, the auditory save under the impression of
sound--the cerebrum, being precisely analogous in its elementary
structure, presupposes the existence of some agent to act through it."

Prof. M. P. Hatfield has said: "The arrangement of the nerve-envelopes
is so like that of the best constructed electrical cables that we cannot
help thinking that both were constructed to conduct something very much
alike. I know that there are those who stoutly maintain that nerve force
is not electricity, and it is not in the senses that an electrical
battery is not the same thing as a live man; but, nevertheless,
nerve-force is closely allied to that wonderful thing that for want of a
better and clearer understanding we agree to call 'electricity.'"


Human Etheric Force.

Professor Haddock, a popular writer along the lines of scientific
psychology and kindred subjects, in a part of his work in which he was
considering the idea that thought may be communicated by means of
ether-vibrations, forcibly says: "The ether is accepted by science as a
reality, and as a medium for light, heat, electricity, magnetism, etc.
The nervous system is certainly comparable to an electric battery with
connecting wires. Communications of thought and feeling without the
mediation of sense-perceptions as commonly understood, is now
established. Inanimate objects exert, now and then, 'strange
influences.' People certainly carry with them a personal atmosphere. The
representation of the condition of these facts by a psychic field,
compared to the magnetic or electric field, becomes, therefore, if not
plausible, at least convenient. As such a 'field' exists surrounding the
sun, so may a 'field' be assumed as surrounding each human individual.
'We have already strong grounds for believing that we live in a medium
which conveys to-and-fro movements to us from the sun, and that these
movements are electro-magnetic, and that all the transformation of light
and heat, and indeed the phenomena of life, are due to the electrical
energy which comes to us across the vacuum which exists between us and
the sun--a vacuum which is pervaded by the ether, which is a fit medium
for the transmission of electro-magnetic waves.' By means, then, of a
similar theory applied to mind and brain and body, we may find
reasonable explanations of many otherwise insoluble mysteries of life,
and, which is of more importance, deduce certain suggestions for the
practical regulation of life in the greatest individual interest."


The Brain-Battery.

The same writer says: "All states of body and mind involve constant
molecular and chemical change. The suggestion arises that the brain,
with its millions of cells and its inconceivable changes in substance,
may be regarded as a transmitting and receiving battery. The brain being
a kind of battery, and the nerves being conductors of released stored-up
energy to different parts of the body, by a kind of action similar to
the actions of electricity and magnetism, it is suggested that, either
by means of the ether, or of some still finer form of matter, discharges
of brain energy may be conducted beyond the limits of the body. If the
nerve-track corresponds to wires, this refined medium may correspond to
the ether-field supposed to be employed in wireless telegraphy. As
electrical movements are conducted without wires, or other visible
media, so may brain-discharges be conveyed beyond the mechanism of the
battery, without the intervention of nerves--except as they may
constitute a part of the battery. Generally speaking, such discharges
would originate in two ways, viz., by direct mental action, or by mental
or physical states--perhaps by a combination."


A Peculiar Organ

So much for the conceptions of modern western science, which agree in
the main with those of the ancient oriental occultists, although of
course different names and terms are employed. But, we think it worth
while to call your attention to the fact that the western scientists
have failed to note the significant presence of a peculiar organ in the
human body, which is regarded as most important in its functions and
offices by the oriental teachers, and which we believe has a very close
connection to the subject just discussed by the western scientists. We
refer to that strange organ or gland known to western science as the
Pineal Gland. Let us see just what this is.


The Pineal Gland

The Pineal Gland is a mass of nervous substance which is found located
in the human brain in a position near the middle of the skull, almost
directly above the extreme top of the spinal column. It is shaped like a
small cone, and is of a reddish-gray color. It lies in front of the
cerebellum, and is attached to the third ventricle of the brain. It
contains a small quantity of peculiar particles of a gritty, sand-like
substance, which is commonly known as "brain sand." It derives its
scientific name from its shape, which resembles a pine-cone. Western
physiologists are at sea regarding the function and office of this
interesting organ, or gland, and the text books generally content
themselves with stating that "the functions of the Pineal Gland are not
understood." The oriental occultists, on the other hand, claim that the
Pineal Gland, with its peculiar arrangement of nerve-cell corpuscles,
and its tiny grains of "brain-sand," is intimately associated with
certain forms of the transmission and reception of waves of mental
vibrations. Western students of occultism have been struck with the
remarkable resemblance between the Pineal Gland and a certain part of
the receiving apparatus employed in wireless telegraphy, the latter also
containing small particles which bear a close resemblance to the
"brain-sand" of the Pineal Gland; and this fact is often urged by them
to substantiate the theory of the oriental occultists concerning the
function and office of this interesting organ of the human body which is
located in the brain of man.


Transmission of Thought.

Many other facts set forth by modern western science could be cited in
our consideration of the question of the existence of any possible organ
for the reception of thought vibrations, but it is thought that
sufficient evidence of this kind has already been submitted to your
attention--sufficient to remove any reasonable doubts, and to give the
student at least a clear and open mind on the subject. Summing up such
evidence, we may say that modern science is fast approaching the
position which is so well expressed by Camille Flammarion, the eminent
French scientist, as follows: "The action of one mind upon another at a
distance--the transmission of thought, mental suggestion, communication
at a distance--all these are not more extraordinary than the action of
the magnet on iron, the influence of the moon on the sea, the
transportation of the human voice by electricity, the revolution of the
chemical constituents of a star by the analysis of its light, or,
indeed, all the wonders of contemporary science. Only these psychic
communications are of a more elevated kind, and may serve to put us on
the track of a knowledge of human nature. What is certain is this: That
Telepathy can and ought to be henceforth considered by Science as an
incontestible reality; that minds are able to act upon each other
without the intervention of the senses; that psychic force exists,
though its nature is yet unknown."


A General Principle.

At this point we wish to impress upon the minds of the students of this
book that what has been above said regarding that class of mental
communications generally classed under the head of Telepathy also
applies to many much higher phases of occult phenomena and psychic
manifestations. In fact, this is one of the reasons why we have paid
such close attention to the scientific evidence substantiating this
class of phenomena. It is not too much to say that in what has been said
in the foregoing pages there is to be found a scientific basis for the
phenomenon of "spirit communication," at least in many of its phases. It
is but a step in thought--and a natural and easy step at that--from the
matter of the communication of thought from the mind of one person or
the material plane of life to another person on the same plane, on to
the matter of the communication of thought from the mind of an
individual entity on a higher plane of life to a second person who is
abiding on the lower material plane occupied by us at this stage of our
existence. It is seen that the difference consists largely in the matter
of the degree and rate of vibratory energy employed, and the preparation
of a proper receiving instrument for the reception and translation of
such messages. This phase of the subject will be considered in fuller
detail in a subsequent portion of this book.


Transformation of Vibrations.

One of the things which seem to greatly puzzle the average student of
the subject of mental vibrations, and thought-transference, is that
which may be called "thought waves." The student is unable to conceive
of a wave of "thought" being projected into the air, and then traveling
along until it reaches the mind of other persons. The difficulty, upon
analysis, is seen to consist of the inability to conceive of "thought"
as being a material substance capable of traveling in "waves." It is no
wonder that the student finds this conception difficult, for there is no
such thing as "thought" traveling in this way. The phenomenon of thought
transference is accounted for scientifically in quite another manner, as
we shall see in a moment. The student is advised to carefully note this
distinction, for upon its understanding depends greatly the intelligent
comprehension of the entire subject of thought vibrations and
thought-transference.


Example of Electric Light

Perhaps this matter may be best explained by means of illustrations of
the operation of electricity and light--electric vibrations and light
vibrations. In both cases the secret of the transmission of the
vibrations or waves of vibratory energy may be summed up in the word
"TRANSFORMATION." For instance: When we transmit electric vibrations
over a fine wire or thread of carbon, the electric vibrations are
transformed into light vibrations and manifest as "electric light." In
another form of transmission the electric vibrations are transformed
into "electric heat." But this is merely one phase of the
transformation; consider carefully the more complex phases, as follows:
We speak into the receiver of a telephone and the sound vibrations
produced by our voice are transformed into electrical vibrations and in
that form travel over the telephone wire; arriving at the other end of
the wire, these electric vibrations enter into the receiver, and are
there transformed into sound vibrations, and as such are heard by the
person holding the receiver. Now note this: the sound vibrations do not
travel at all; instead, they are transformed into electric waves, which
in turn are transformed at the receiving end of the line into sound
vibrations once more. And unless the receiving apparatus be present, and
properly adjusted, there is no second transformation at all; and in such
case the electric vibrations remain such.


Example of Wireless Telegraphy.

Likewise, in the case of the wireless telegraphy, the electric energy
produced by the sending instrument is transformed into subtle and finer
etheric waves, which travel to the receiving instrument, and are there
transformed into electric waves, the latter producing physical changes
in the receiving apparatus which enable them to be read by the observer.
In the case of wireless telephony there is still more complex process of
transformation, as follows: the speaker conveys sound vibrations into
the instrument; these are transformed into electric vibrations; and the
latter into the etheric vibrations which travel through space to the
receiver. Reaching the receiver, the etheric vibrations are transformed
into ordinary electric vibrations, and these in turn into sound waves
capable of being sensed by the listener.


Example of Light Waves.

The same process is detected in the transmission of what we call light
waves. The activities manifested by the substance of the sun set up
certain vibrations which we call "light vibrations." These are
communicated to the ether in the form of so-called "light waves" but
which are merely etheric waves of a certain rate of vibration. These
waves travel through space and are transformed into "light" only when
they reach some material substance capable of receiving and reflecting
their vibrations. Science tells us that empty space is perfectly DARK,
and that light manifests only when the etheric light vibrations come in
contact with material substance and are there transformed into "light."
Light, as "light" does not travel from the sun--what we know as "light"
is simply the result of the transformation of certain etheric waves into
"light" by reason of their contact with material substances.


Transformation of Mental Vibrations

Now for the analogy. Mental vibrations are so only when they remain in
their own uninterrupted medium of channel of activity, i.e., the brain
and the nervous system of the individual. Many hold that they are able
to leap over the barrier of flesh separating two persons when such
persons are in immediate physical contact, and the conditions are of a
certain kind; but as a rule they do not do so. But, as all investigators
know, mental vibrations are capable of being transformed into some
subtle form of etheric vibrations, and the latter when coming in contact
with the nervous system of other persons may be again transformed, this
time into mental vibrations which produced thoughts, feelings and mental
images in the minds of the second persons or persons, corresponding with
these mental states in the first person. Think over this carefully,
until you grasp the idea fully.


Vibrational Attunement

And here we find another startling correspondence between the phenomena
of wireless telegraphy and that of thought transference or transmission
of mental vibrations. We allude to the fact that while a wireless
telegraphic sending instrument may be sending forth vibrations of the
strongest power, its messages are capable of being received or "picked
up" only by those instruments which are "in tune" with the sending
instrument to at least a certain degree; to all other instruments, those
which are not "in tune" with the sending instrument, there is no message
perceptible. Precisely this same state of affairs is found to prevail in
the realm of mental vibrations and thought transmission. The individual
receives only such messages as emanate from instruments with which he is
"in tune"--to all the rest he is deaf and unconscious. But once "in
tune" with the higher vibrations of the mental realm, he will receive
every message traveling on that particular plane at that particular
time, unless he deliberately shut them out. We shall see how this works
out in ordinary life, when we consider the general subject of Telepathy
and Thought Transference in the succeeding Chapter.


In Tune With Higher Planes

But, in connection with the above statement of the "in tune" law or rule
of manifestation, we wish to call to the attention of the student the
important fact that the same law prevails in the case of communications
from the higher planes of existence--the so-called "spirit
communications" and other messages of this kind reaching individuals on
our own plane of existence. It is only when the individual on the
"earth plane" becomes "in tune" with the sending mental instrument of
the entity abiding on a higher plane of existence, that it is able to
"pick up" the message being sent to earth. Even the same individual is
often unable to "catch" the messages at one time, while at other times
he experiences no difficulty whatsoever. An understanding of this
fact--this law or rule of manifestation--will throw a great light over
many dark places of misunderstanding and perplexity concerning certain
phases of occult and psychic phenomena. This feature of such phenomena
will be considered in detail in subsequent parts of this book.


The Two Key-Words.

Concluding our consideration of the "just how" of the transmission of
thoughts, messages, and "psychograms" between two minds, be they both on
earth plane, or one of the two on the higher planes, we would say:
"Always remember the two Key-Words, namely TRANSFORMATION and
ATTUNEMENT." These two Key-Words will enable you to unlock many doors of
thought on these subjects--doors which otherwise will remain closed to
you.



PART III

THOUGHT TRANSFERENCE


The most elementary and simple form in which mental vibrations are
transmitted is that which may be called Thought Transference. In the
category of Thought Transference may be included two quite general
classes, as follows: (1) Involuntary Transmission of Mental Vibrations,
and (2) Voluntary Transmission of Mental Vibrations, commonly known as
Telepathy. In this part of this book both of these general classes of
Thought Transference shall be considered in some detail.


Involuntary Transmission of Mental Vibrations.

Mental vibrations emanating from the brain of the individual take on the
form of wave-like movements in the ether, which are accordingly known as
"thought-waves." These thought-waves are constantly being sent forth
from the brains of all persons, and after being sent forth they spread
in space from the immediate neighborhood of the person originating them,
to a distance proportioned to the strength and power energizing the
original mental state. These thought-waves have the power of awakening
and arousing into activity corresponding mental states in other persons
coming within their field of force, according to the laws of Mental
Induction. It should be noted here that the activity aroused in the mind
of the receiving person is accomplished by the setting into vibratory
motion the Chitta or Mind-substance of that person, just as the
receiving diaphragm of the telephone is set vibrating at the same rate
as that of the sending instrument, and thus the original sound-waves are
reproduced.


Thought Waves

Thought-waves are manifested in various forms, modes, and phases, and in
different degrees of power. Some are emanated without any clearly
defined desire or intent to accomplish certain ends, while others are
charged with strong desire focused to a definite point by clear-cut
ideas of ends sought to be accomplished. The latter, however, are
usually entitled to be classed among the "involuntary" phases of Thought
Transference, because the senders are generally unaware that
thought-waves have an actual effect upon the minds of other persons;
their thoughts and mental states arising in accordance with their
feelings, desires, and general aims. Where the individual has learned
that thought is an active power, he may deliberately send forth his
thought-waves directed toward the person or persons whom he wishes to
affect and influence.

The student must remember, however, that there is a great difference in
the power and effective activity between thought-waves sent forth under
different circumstances. Some are sent forth idly, and with no focused
power or energy of desire and feeling, and such naturally are weak in
effect upon others. Others are sent forth vitalized with strong desire
and feeling, and focused with a clear ideal and mental picture, and,
consequently, exert a far greater degree of effect upon the minds of
others with whom they come in contact. The analogy of the waves of
electricity holds good here, for just as the electric power may be
strong or weak, as the case may be, so may the mental force be strong or
weak under different circumstances, and in different individuals.


Vibratory Thought Force

The vibratory force of thought-waves persist for some time after their
original emanation. Here, also we have analogies on the physical plane,
as follows: The heat of a room continues for some time after the fire
which originally caused it has ceased to burn. Likewise, the air of a
room may manifest the perfume of a flower, or extract, long after the
latter has been removed from the room. Again, rays of light persist in
existence long after the star manifesting them has been blotted out of
existence. In the same way thought-vibrations continue to manifest in a
place, large or small though its space may be, long after the original
sender has passed from that plane--perhaps even long after he has passed
from earth life.


Mental Atmospheres

A well known American writer on this subject has said concerning this
point: "There are many places today filled with the thought-vibrations
of minds long since passed out of the body. There are places filled with
the strong vibrations of tragedies long since enacted there. Every place
has a mental atmosphere of its own, the same arising from the
thought-vibrations set in motion by the various persons who have
inhabited or occupied them. Every city has its own mental atmosphere
which has its effect upon persons moving into them. Some are lively,
some dull, some progressive, some old-fogyish, some moral, some
immoral--the result of the character of the early settlers and leading
spirits, of the place in question. Persons moving into these towns are
affected by the mental atmospheres thereof, and either sink to the
general level, or else, if strong enough, help to change the mental tone
of the place. Sometimes a change in conditions bring a large influx of
new people, to a town, and the mental waves of the newcomers tend to
bring about a marked change in the local mental atmosphere. These facts
have been noticed by many observing people who often have not been
familiar with the principles underlying and producing the facts which
the observers have so clearly discerned."


The Contagion of Thought.

The same writer says, along the same general lines: "Many have of course
noticed the differing mental atmospheres of stores, offices, and other
places of business. Some of such places give one an air of confidence
and trust; others create a feeling of suspicion and distrust; some
convey an impression of active, wideawake management, while others
impress one as being behind the times, and suffering from a want of
alert, active management. These differing mental atmospheres are caused
by the different prevailing mental attitudes of the owners of the
respective establishments. The managers of business places send forth
thought-waves of their own, and their employees naturally falling into
the pace set for them also send forth similar vibrations, and before
long the whole place is vibrating on a certain scale. A change of
management soon produces a marked change in the entire mental atmosphere
of the place. In the same way, we notice the mental atmospheres of the
houses we happen to visit; in this way we become conscious of an entire
mental scale of many notes, the notes being sounded unconsciously by the
minds of the occupants of the houses. From some thresholds radiate
harmony, while others breathe the spirit of inharmony. Some radiate
emotional warmth, while others chill one like an iceberg, by reason of
the emotional coldness of the dwellers therein. Likewise, the low
quarters of our cities, the dens of vice, and the haunts of dissipation
vibrate with the character of the thought and feeling of those
inhabiting them. And, often, the weak-willed visitor is thus tempted. In
the same way, certain other places are charged with the vibrations of
strong, helpful, elevating mental states, which tend to lift up and
elevate, energize and stimulate the minds and feelings of those visiting
these places. Thought and feeling are contagious, by reason of the laws
of mental vibration and mental induction."


Mental Whirlpools.

The contagion of thought-vibrations is manifested by such vibrations
coming into contact with the minds of other persons within the field of
mental induction of the first person, and there setting up similar
vibrations. We know that orators, actors, preachers and others
addressing audiences of persons, send forth strong mental currents
which tend to awaken corresponding vibrations in the minds of their
hearers. We weep, smile, grow angry, feel happy, according to the
character of the thought-waves, of the person on the platform or the
stage, providing that we accept the same. And, according to the same
principle, persons scattered over large areas are influenced and
affected in the same way by whirlpools of mental vibrations set into
original motion by some strong, masterful public man. A writer has said
concerning this point:


Mental Tidal Waves

"We know how great waves of feeling spread over a town, city, or county,
sweeping people off their feet, and causing them to lose their balance.
Great waves of political enthusiasm, or war-spirit or prejudice for or
against certain people, or groups of people, sweep over places and cause
men to act in a manner which they afterward often regret when they come
to themselves and consider the matter in the light of cold reason.
People are swayed by demagogues or magnetic leaders who wish to capture
their votes or patronage; and they are often led into acts of mob
violence, or similar atrocities, by yielding to these waves of
contagious thought. On the other hand, we know equally well how great
waves of religious emotion spread out over the community upon the
occasion of some great 'revival' excitement or religious fervor."


Immunity to Thought Influences

Persons becoming acquainted for the first time with the above recited
facts of mental vibrations, mental currents, mental waves, and mental
contagion, frequently raise the objection that if all this be true, why
are we not constantly swept off of our feet by these great waves of
mental vibrations, whereas, in fact, we are seldom or never aware of
them? The question is a natural one, and is capable of a satisfactory
answer. In the first place, many of these mental currents NEUTRALIZE
each other, and thus both cease to exert any marked effect. And again,
most persons are really "immune" to most of the thought waves reaching
them, this by reason of the protective resistive power bestowed by
Nature, and acquired during the evolution of the race.

To understand this, we have but to think of our immunity to the great
majority of sounds and sights on the streets of a busy city. On a busy
street corner, we are assailed by an infinitude of sounds and
sights--but we hear but few of these, and see still fewer. The rest of
these impressions are lost to us, although we have ears to hear and eyes
to see. We hear and see only those impressions which are strong enough
to awaken our ATTENTION. In the same way we fail to perceive the
numerous thought vibrations and mental currents constantly surrounding
us, and our attention is attracted and awakened by those sufficiently
strong and vigorous to awaken our attention. The analogy is a very close
one, and the understanding of one set of phenomena gives us the key to
the other.


Mental Attunement

It should not fail to be noticed, moreover, that we habitually receive
and accept more readily those thought vibrations which are in harmony
with our own average habitual mental states; and, according to the same
general principle, we tend to habitually reject and fail to receive
those vibrations which are INHARMONIOUS to us for the same reason. Here,
you will notice, we have an illustration of the principle of
"attunement" which, as we have informed you, is operative on the plane
of thought and mental vibrations as well as on that of wireless
telegraphy. Just as it is a psychological fact that we tend to see and
to hear those things which are in harmony with our beliefs and opinions,
and our interest, so is it a metaphysical fact that we tend to accept
and absorb the mental vibrations which are in harmony with our opinions,
beliefs, and interest, and to reject those which are opposed thereto.

Moreover, the person who acquaints himself with the law of mental
vibrations and thought-transference acquires a practical knowledge which
enables him to render himself immune to objectionable and undesirable
mental currents or thought-waves. We are not necessarily open to the
influence of every stray current of thought or feeling that happens to
be in our immediate vicinity. Instead, by the proper methods,
consciously or unconsciously practiced and manifested, we may, and often
do, insulate ourselves so that these undesirable mental influences fail
utterly to affect us; and, likewise, we may actually attract to
ourselves the desirable mental currents. These principles and methods
will be given later in this part of this book; they are mentioned here
merely to acquaint you with the fact that they are existent and known to
those familiar with this subject.


Voluntary Transmission of Mental Vibrations.

Under the head of Voluntary Transmission of Mental Vibrations may be
placed the following two general classes of phenomena, viz., (1)
Voluntary Efforts to Exert Mental Influence upon Others; and (2)
Voluntary Efforts to Produce the Phenomena of Telepathy, along
Scientific Lines. Each of these general classes of phenomena will now be
presented for your inspection and consideration.


Voluntary Mental Influence.

Under the category of Voluntary Mental Influence we find much of the
phenomena formerly classed as "Magic"--and by this we mean both White
Magic, or efforts to produce results beneficial to the person
influenced, and Black Magic, or efforts to produce results beneficial to
the person exerting the influence, and often to the positive detriment
of the person influenced.

WHITE MAGIC. Under the category of White Magic may be placed all those
efforts of mental healing, and similar phases of metaphysical
therapeutics; and the accompanying efforts directed toward the general
happiness and welfare of the person "treated." The word "treatment" has
sprung into use in this connection, in America and Europe, by reason of
its employment by the numerous metaphysical cults and schools
flourishing there. We hear on all hands of persons being "treated" for
Health, Happiness, and Prosperity in this way. While in some cases, the
"magic" is worked on higher planes than those of thought-vibrations, it
is nevertheless true that in most instances the entire process is that
of mental induction, along the lines described in the preceding pages
of this book. In such cases the person influenced opens himself to the
helpful thought of the person "treating" him, and thus a co-operation
and mental "team work" is secured, often with the most beneficial
results. This phase of the subject is too well known to require lengthy
consideration in this book, and is more properly the subject of the many
books devoted to this special phase of mental power.

     *     *     *     *     *

BLACK MAGIC. It has well been said that there are always two poles to
everything in Nature, and continued experience and investigation seems
to substantiate this statement. Whenever we find a force or power
producing beneficial results, we may usually feel assured that the same
force or power, turned in another direction, or possibly reversed in its
action, will produce results of an opposite character. And so it is with
this subject of "Magic" which we are now considering. While we would be
very glad to pass over this phase of the subject, truth and duty to our
readers compel us to state that White Magic has its opposite pole--that
opposite pole known as Black Magic, or the use of psychic force for
selfish and unworthy ends. There is no use trying to pursue the ostrich
policy regarding these things--it is always better to face them boldly,
and then to take means to avoid the evil contained in them.

     *     *     *     *     *

We prefer to quote from other writers on this subject, who have given
this particular matter the most careful attention and investigation, and
who have set forth simply and plainly the result of their investigations
and discoveries. Here follow several quotations from authorities of this
kind:


Base Use of Mind Power

One writer says: "It is a fact known to all students of occultism that
Black Magic has been frequently employed in all times to further the
selfish, base ends of some people. And it is also known to advanced
thinkers today that even in this enlightened age there are many who do
not scruple to stoop to the use of this hateful practice in order to
serve their own ends, notwithstanding the punishment that all true
occultists know awaits such persons. The annals of history are full of
records of various forms of witchcraft, conjuration, and similar forms
of Black Magic. All the much talked of practice of 'putting spells' upon
people are really forms of Black Magic, heightened by the fear and
superstition of those affected. One has but to read the history of
witchcraft to see that there was undoubtedly some force at work behind
all of the appalling superstitions and ignorance shown by the people of
those times. What they attributed to the influence of people 'in league
with the devil' really arose from the use of Black Magic, or an unworthy
use of Mental Influence, the two things being one at the last.


The Secret of Witchcraft

"An examination of the methods employed by these 'witches,' as shown by
their confessions, give us a key to the mystery. These 'witches' would
fix their minds upon other people, or their animals, and by holding a
concentrated mental picture there, would send forth thought-waves
affecting the welfare of the persons being 'adversely treated,' which
would influence and disturb them, and often bring on sicknesses. Of
course, the effect of those 'treatments' were greatly heightened by the
extreme fear and superstition held by the masses of people at the time,
for fear is ever a weakening factor in mental influence, and the
superstitions and credulity of the people caused their minds to vibrate
in such a manner as to render them extremely passive to the adverse
influences being directed against them. It is well known that the
Voodoos of Africa, and similar cults among other savage races, practice
Black Magic among their people with great effect. Among the native of
Hawaii there are certain men known as 'Kahunas' who pray people sick, or
well, whichever way they are paid to do. These instances could be
multiplied almost indefinitely, but the basic principle is ever the same
in such cases.


Modern Black Magic.

"In our own civilized lands there are many people who have learned the
principles of mental influence, and who are using the same for unworthy
purposes, seeking to injure others and to defeat their undertakings, or
else trying to bring them around to their own (the treators') point of
view and inclinations. The modern revival of occult knowledge has
operated along two lines, and in opposite directions. On the one hand,
we see and hear of the mighty power for good that mental influence is
exerting over the race today, raising up the sick, strengthening the
weak, putting courage into the despondent, and transforming failures
into successes. But, on the other hand, the hateful selfishness and
greed of unprincipled persons is taking advantage of this mighty force
of nature, and prostituting it to the hateful ends of such persons,
without heed to the dictates of conscience or the teaching of religion
or of ordinary morality. These people are sowing a baleful wind, which
will result in their reaping a frightful whirlwind on the mental plane.
They are bringing down upon themselves pain and misery in the future."


The Explanation of Sorcery.

Another writer says: "In various stages of history we find the records
of persons having been affected by the influences of witches, sorcerers,
and other evil-minded, unprincipled persons. In most cases these
so-called witches and sorcerers themselves were under the delusion that
they were being assisted by the devil or some other supernatural being.
They did not realize that they were simply using natural forces.
Studying the history of witchcraft, sorcery, black magic, and the like,
you will find that the devotees thereof usually employed some
psychometric method. In other cases they would mould little figures of
clay, or of wax, in the general shape and appearance of the person whom
they wished to affect. It was thought that these little figures were
endowed with some supernatural powers or attributes, but of course this
was mere superstition. The whole power of the little figures arose from
the fact that they aided the imagination of the spell-worker in forming
a mental image of the person sought to be influenced; and thus
established a strong mental rapport condition. Added to this, you must
remember that the fear and belief of the public greatly aided the
spell-worker, and increased his power and influence over these poor
persons."


The Power of Fearthought.

The last-named writer explains the reference to "fear and belief" in the
last sentence above quoted by the following very important statements,
and these we ask every student of this book to firmly impress upon his
mind, for a mighty truth is therein conveyed. The statements in question
are as follows:

"Your attention is hereby called to a very important psychic principle
involved in the manifestation of that class of phenomena in which is
embraced the cases of witchcraft, sorcery, etc., with which the pages of
history are filled. It is a well established fact that by denying the
psychic power over you exerted by any person whatsoever, you practically
neutralize the psychic power of such person, at least so far as its
effect upon and power over yourself is concerned. The stronger and more
positive is your mental attitude of immunity to such power, and your
assertion and affirmation of that immunity, the greater is your own
power of psychic resistance, and the less does his possible power over
you become. The average person, not knowing this, is more or less
passive to psychic influences of other persons, and may be affected by
them to a greater or less extent, the degree depending upon the psychic
development of the person seeking to influence him.


The Negative Pole.

"At the extreme negative pole of susceptibility we find persons who
believe firmly that other persons have psychic power over them, and who
are consequently more or less afraid of such persons and of their
influence. This belief and fear operates in the direction of making such
persons peculiarly sensitive and impressionable to such influence, and
thus easily affected by psychic induction. This is the reason that the
so-called witches and sorcerers and others of evil repute have been
often able to acquire such a power over their victims, and to cause them
so much trouble. The secret is that THE VICTIMS BELIEVED IN THE POWER OF
THE OTHER PERSONS, AND FEARED THEIR POWER. The greater the belief in,
and fear of, the power of the other persons, the greater the
susceptibility to their influence; the greater the disbelief in such
power, and the firm belief in one's own power of immunity and that of
neutralizing the effect of the psychic influence of other persons, the
less is one's degree of susceptibility, and the greater is one's degree
of immunity and power. This is the rule in the case--keep it in mind!


Voodooism Explained.

"Among the negroes of the South, in America, and among the Hawaiians, we
find marked instances of this kind. The negro Voodoo men and women work
Black Magic on those of their race who are superstitious and credulous,
and who have a mortal fear of the Voodoo. Travelers who have visited the
countries in which there is a large negro population have many
interesting tales to recite of the terrible workings of these Voodoo
black magicians. In some cases, sickness and even death is the result.
But, mark you this! It is only those who believe in, and fear, the power
of the Voodoos that are so affected. In Hawaii, the Kahunas or native
magicians are renowned for their power to cause sickness and death to
those who have offended them; or to those who have offended some client
of the Kahuna, and who have hired the latter to 'pray' the enemy to
sickness or death. The poor, ignorant Hawaiians, believing implicitly in
the power of the Kahunas, and being in deadly fear of them, are very
susceptible to their psychic influence, and naturally fall easy victims
to their vile arts, unless they buy off the Kahuna, or make peace with
his client. White persons living in Hawaii are not affected by the
Kahunas, for they do not believe in them, neither do they fear them.
Unconsciously, but yet strongly, they 'deny' the power, and are immune.
So you see the principle working out here, too. Once you have the
master-key, you may unlock many doors of mystery which have heretofore
been closed to you."


Self-Protection.

The following quotations from writers on this special subject contain
detailed directions for the use of those who may have reason to believe
that some other person or persons are trying to use psychic force, or
mental currents, upon them for selfish purposes, or otherwise. Of course
the general mental attitude of disbelief, and assertion of one's one
immunity is sufficient for the purposes of general psychic protection;
but we have thought it proper to include the following special
directions given by those who have made a close study of this subject.

One writer says: "When you come in contact with people who are seeking
to influence you by psychic methods, either direct or indirect, you will
find yourself able to defy their mental attacks by simply remembering
the strength immanent in your Ego, or Spirit, aided by the statement or
affirmation (made silently to yourself) 'I am an Immortal Spirit, using
the power of my Ego, which renders me immune from all base psychic
attacks or power.' With this mental attitude you may make powerful even
the slightest mental effort in the direction of sending forth your own
mental vibrations, and these will scatter the adverse influences in all
directions; it will often be found that the other person will show signs
of confusion in such a case, and will seek to get away from your
presence. With this consciousness held in mind, your mental command to
another, 'Let me alone--I cast off your influence by the power of my
Spirit,' will operate so strongly that you will often actually see the
effect at once. If the other person be stubborn, and determined to
influence you by words of suggestion, coaxing, threatening, or similar
methods, look him or her straight in the eye, saying mentally: 'I defy
you--my inner power casts off your influence.' Try this the next time
that any one attempts to influence you either verbally or by means of
thought-waves, and see how strong and positive you will feel, and how
the efforts of the other person will fail. This sounds simple, but the
little secret is worth thousands of dollars to every individual who will
put it into practice."


Repelling Adverse Influences.

This writer continues: "Not only in the case of personal influence in
the actual presence of the other person may be defeated in this way, but
the same method will act equally well in the matter of repelling the
mental influence of others directed against you in the form of 'absent
treatments,' etc. If you feel yourself inclining toward doing something
which in your heart you feel is not to your best interests, judged from
a true viewpoint, you may know that, consciously or unconsciously,
someone is seeking in influence you in this way. Then smile to yourself,
and make the statements mentioned above, or some similar one, and
holding the power of the Spirit within your soul, send forth a mental
command just as you would in case the person were actually before you in
person. You may also deny out of existence the influencing power, by
asserting mentally: 'I DENY your power to influence me; you have no such
power over me; I am resting securely upon the Spirit within me; I deny
out of existence any power over me asserted by you.' After repelling
these absent influences you will at once experience a feeling of relief
and strength, and will be able to smile at the thought of any such
adverse influence affecting you in the slightest."


Neutralizing Psychic Influences.

Another writer gives us the following most interesting information and
advice for use in cases of this kind: "I wish to point out to you a
means of protection against the use of psychic influence against
yourself on the part of unscrupulous persons, or any other persons
whomsoever, for that matter. One is fully justified in employing this
method of protection against even the meddling influence of other
persons, who are trying to influence you without your permission or
consent. The following is the method of self-protection or defense
against this class of psychic influence: In the first place, you must,
of course, refuse to admit to your mind any feeling of fear regarding
the influence of other persons, for such fear opens the door to their
influence, as all students of this subject know. If you have been, or
are fearful of the psychic influence of any person, you must get to work
and drive out that feeling by positive and vigorous denials. The DENIAL,
as all students know, is the positive neutralizer of the psychic
influence of another person, providing you make it in full belief in its
truth. You must take the mental position (which is really the true one)
that you are absolutely immune to the psychic attack or influence. You
should say, mentally, 'deny to any person the power to influence me
psychically without my consent; I am positive to all such influences,
and they are negative to me; I neutralize all such influences by this
positive denial!' It should encourage you to know that it requires far
less force and power to repel and neutralize psychic influences of this
kind, than is required to send forth the power; an ounce of denial and
protection overcomes a pound of psychic attacking power. Nature gives
you the means of protection, and gives you the 'best end of the stick';
and it is your own fault if you do not use it effectively. A word to the
wise is sufficient."


Telepathic Phenomena.

The second general class of phenomena in the general category of
Voluntary Transmission of Mental Vibrations is that known as "Telepathic
Phenomena." In a sense, of course, all phases of Thought Transmission,
and particularly that of Voluntary Thought Transmission, may be
considered as forms of Telepathy; but for the purpose of classification
and distinction we have in this book classed as Telepathic Phenomena
merely those forms and phases of Thought Transference in which there is
an agreement between the telepathic sender and the telepathic receiver,
and in which the experiments are conducted more or less along the lines
of scientific investigation.


Scientific Investigators.

Scientific observers, for a number of years past, have been conducting
careful series of experiments in Telepathy, and many volumes of the
reports of such investigations have been published by various psychic
research societies. Among the eminent scientists who have devoted much
attention to this subject are the following: Professor Henry Sidgewick,
of Cambridge University; Professor Balfour Stewart, of the Royal Society
of England; Rt. Hon. A. J. Balfour, the eminent English statesman and
scientist; Professor William James, the eminent American psychologist;
Sir William Crookes, the great English chemist, physicist, who invented
the celebrated "Crookes' Tubes," without which the discovery of the
X-Rays, Radio Activity, etc., would have been impossible; Frederick W.
H. Myers, the celebrated investigator of Psychic Phenomena; and Sir
Oliver Lodge, the eminent English scientist. All these men are of the
highest international standing and reputation, and their acceptance of
the phenomena of Telepathy places the same on a firm scientific basis.


How Experiments Are Conducted.

The scientific experiments involving Telepathy, which have been
conducted by numerous societies for psychical research and other bodies,
have ranged from quite simple tests to those very complex. In all of
these experiments there has been one person called the "sender," and
another called the "receiver"--or names corresponding to these. The
sender fixes in his mind a strong impression of the name or picture to
be transmitted, and then makes a positive effort of the will to transmit
the same to the receiver. The receiver assumes a passive receptive
mental attitude, and then reports the word or image that comes into his
mind. The more complex tests embody these same simple features.

Some of the early reports of the Society for Psychical Research, of
London, England, show results most amazing to those who have not made a
personal investigation of these matters. In some of the tests, the
receiver correctly reported seventeen cards in succession, the said
cards having been shown the sender, but kept out of sight of the
receiver, and no possible communication between the two being allowed.
In tests of naming small objects held by the sender, the receiver
correctly named five out of six. In one complicated test, in which
various objects, names, etc., were transmitted, the report shows a
successful report of 202 out of a possible 382. Such results, of course,
took the results entirely out of the operation of the law of averages.
Other successful experiments showed a high percentage of results
obtained from the reproduction by the sender of geometrical and other
figures and designs exhibited to the sender.


Private Experiments.

But, after all, the most convincing evidences of Telepathy are those
which most of us have met with in our own experience. There are but few
intelligent, observing persons who have not, at some time in their life,
had experiences of this kind, in which the thoughts of others were
perceived plainly by themselves. Many persons have established such a
close rapport condition between themselves and friends or relatives that
instances of remarkable thought-transmission between them are quite
common and ordinary.


Development of Telepathic Power.

Practically every person may develop a certain degree of telepathic
power, sending, receiving, or both, by means of a moderate amount of
regular and earnest practice and experiments. In developing sending
power, the person should cultivate concentration, and the use of the
will in the direction of projecting mental states; in the case of the
desired development of the receiving power, the person should develop
receptiveness and passivity, and a certain recognition of an actual
telepathic impulse which is impossible to describe in words but which
comes to every investigator, and which when once experienced is always
recognized thereafter.


"Mind Reading."

Perhaps the best plan for the beginner is to practice the popular "mind
reading" experiment or game, which is quite popular in some localities,
and among persons interested in this line of thought. The experiments of
this kind are performed, generally, about as follows: The receiver
leaves the room, and during his or her absence the company in the room
select some object, large or small, such as a chair or a small penknife,
etc., and the same is shown and named to the sender. Then the receiver
is called back into the room for the experiment, and is blindfolded
securely. Then the receiver takes the right hand of the sender and
places it in his (the receiver's) left hand, holding it firmly there.
The sender then concentrates his mind upon the object to be "found," and
mentally wills that the receiver move toward it. The receiver then
experiences a peculiar faint impulse in the direction of the object, and
accordingly moves toward it. After considerable practice, the receiver
acquires the faculty of not only finding large objects, but also is able
to locate small objects, such as concealed rings, pins, etc.


Development Practices.

This class of experiments, while open to the objection that there may be
more or less muscular direction consciously or unconsciously given by
the sender, nevertheless tend to develop proficiency in both sender and
receiver. In fact, such experiments are perhaps one of the very best
methods of developing projecting or receiving power along the lines of
occult or psychic forces. This because the persons become familiar with
the psychic processes involved, and their efficiency becomes increased
by practice and experiment. This plan is like that of teaching a child
how to walk by means of holding its hand, allowing it to rest on chairs,
etc. In practicing such experiments, the receiver will soon become
conscious of receiving the thought message in what may be called a
"wireless flash," instead of by the slower, and less clear process of
transmission through the physical body of the sender, and thence through
his own nerves. When the sender begins to experience these flashes of
consciousness, he is ready to proceed to the next stage.


The "Willing Game."

The second stage on telepathic development is much akin to that just
described, with the difference that there is no physical contact between
the sender and the receiver--no holding of hands, etc. A variation of
this is found in the familiar "willing game" in which the whole roomful
of persons concentrates upon the receiver, and "wills" that he find a
selected object. On the whole, however, the private experiments
conducted by the sender and the receiver, with perhaps a few intelligent
and sympathetic spectators, are far better than the "willing game" plan,
in which there are usually many triflers present ready to make a joke of
the whole thing, and thus taking away that true concentration under
which the best results may be obtained.


Formal Tests.

The third step in telepathic development is that of conducting
experiments similar to those originally conducted by the Society for
Psychical Research, previously mentioned. That is to say, the sender may
select cards from a pack, coins from a pile, small objects from a
collection, etc., and then endeavor to transmit the impression of the
same to the receiver--the latter then reporting his flashes of
impression received. This may be rendered more complicated by having the
sender in one place, and the receiver at another, the time having
previously been agreed upon between them. In experiments conducted at
long range, it has been generally found better for the receiver to write
down the word, thought, or mental, picture which has been transmitted to
him by the sender; and for the sender to write down the name or picture
of the thing the idea of which he has transmitted. These memoranda serve
not only as scientific proof of the experiment, but also serve as a
barometer of progress being made during the experiments.


Automatic Writing.

In this connection it may be stated that many investigators and
experimentors along the lines of telepathic phenomena have met with
considerable success in the direction of Automatic Writing from living
persons, which of course is merely a special form of Telepathy. In some
cases the communications received in this way were at first thought to
be from disembodied entities, until later it was discovered that the
thoughts were actually transmitted (in some cases unintentionally) by
living persons. The late W. T. Stead, the London editor and famous
investigator of psychic phenomena, who was lost on the "Titanic" several
years ago, was remarkably successful along this special line of
telepathic transmission, he being one of the most efficient receivers of
this kind of which those familiar with the subject have any knowledge.
His written records of these experiments are very interesting, and form
a valuable contribution to this subject. In this class of experiments,
the sender concentrates fixedly upon the thought--word for word--and
wills that the recipient write down the word so transmitted; the
receiver sit passively at the time agreed upon, and allows his arm and
hand to be moved by means of the psychic currents beating upon him, and
which are then unconsciously transformed into muscular action--the
process being similar to that of ordinary writing, except that instead
of the activity of the brain of the writer being behind the muscular
motion, that of the sender performs that task.


Psychic Sensitiveness.

The student of this book will find in the succeeding portions thereof,
from time to time, certain general instructions regarding the
cultivation of psychic receptivity and sensitiveness. These general
instructions are also applicable to the cultivation of telepathic power,
and may be properly applied to that end. There is really but one general
principle involved in all the many forms of psychic receptivity, namely
that of (1) shutting the senses to the ordinary impressions of the
outside world, and (2) opening the higher channels of sense to the
impressions coming in the form of vibrations of the higher forces and
finer powers of Nature. At the last, it is simply a matter of "getting
in tune," just as truly as in the case of the wireless telegraphy. These
things are difficult to explain in ordinary words to one who has had no
experience along these lines; but when one begins to actually experiment
and practice, the way opens out gradually and steadily, and then the
person can grasp the meaning of the little "hints" dropped by others who
have traveled the same path. So, after all, it comes down to the matter
of Practice, Experiment, and Learning by Trying!



PART IV

CLAIRVOYANCE AND KINDRED PHENOMENA


A very large and very interesting class of occult or psychic phenomena
is that known under the very general classification of "Clairvoyance,"
which term we have thought it advisable to employ in this sense in this
book, notwithstanding the technical objections urged by some against
such a general usage. The term "Clairvoyance" really means "clear
seeing," or "clear sight," but its special meaning, established by long
usage, is "A power of discerning objects not perceptible to the normal
senses." When it comes to the technical use of the term by students and
teachers of psychic research and occultism, however, there is found a
confused meaning of the term, some employing it in one sense, and others
in another one. Accordingly, it is perhaps as well to explain the
particular usage adopted and followed in this book.


Clairvoyance Defined.

The English Society for Psychical Research, in its glossary, defines the
term as follows: "The faculty or act of perceiving, as though visually,
with some coincidental truth, some distant scene; it is used sometimes,
but hardly properly, for transcendental vision, or the perception of
beings regarded as on another plane of existence." A distinguished
investigator along psychic lines, in one of her reports to the English
Society for Psychical Research, has given the following definition of
this term as employed by her in her reports, viz., "The word
'clairvoyant' is often used very loosely, and with widely different
meanings. I denote by it a faculty of acquiring supernormally, BUT NOT
BY READING THE MINDS OF PERSONS PRESENT, a knowledge of facts such as we
normally acquire by the use of our senses. I do not limit it to
knowledge that would normally be acquired by the sense of sight, nor do
I limit it to a knowledge of present facts. A similar knowledge of the
past, and if necessary, of future events, may be included. On the other
hand, I exclude the mere faculty of seeing apparitions, which is
sometimes called clairvoyance."

The last stated definition agrees almost perfectly with the views of the
writer of the present book, and the term "Clairvoyance" is used here in
the particular sense indicated by such definition. The student of this
book, therefore, is asked to distinguish Clairvoyance, on the one hand,
from the phenomena of Telepathy or Thought Transference, and, on the
other hand, from the phenomena of communication with entities on other
planes of existence, including the perception of apparitions.


The Phenomena of Clairvoyance.

The phenomena of Clairvoyance may be subdivided (a) according to methods
employed, and also (b) according to general distinctions. The said
classifications follow:

CLASSIFICATION ACCORDING TO METHODS. The classification of Clairvoyant
Phenomena according to methods employed, proceeds as follows: (1)
PSYCHOMETRY, in which the clairvoyant becomes en rapport through the
medium of some physical object connected with the person or scene which
is the object of the en rapport connection; (2) CRYSTAL GAZING, etc., in
which the en rapport connection is established by means of a crystal,
magic mirror, etc., into which the clairvoyant gazes; (3) DIRECT
CLAIRVOYANCE, in which the clairvoyant directly establishes the en
rapport connection by means of raising his or her psychic vibrations so
as to become "in tune" with the finer vibrations of Nature, without the
aid of physical objects.


Classification According to General Distinctions.

The classification of Clairvoyant Phenomena according to general
distinctions, proceeds as follows: (1) PRESENT CLAIRVOYANCE, in which
the objects perceived by the clairvoyant are present in Space and Time,
although invisible to normal sight; (2) SPACE CLAIRVOYANCE, in which the
clairvoyant vision includes objects and scenes removed in space from the
immediate normal perception of the clairvoyant; (3) TIME CLAIRVOYANCE,
in which the clairvoyant perceives objects or scenes removed from him in
past time, or future time.

In order that the student may obtain a comprehensive understanding of
the phenomena of Clairvoyance, we have thought it well to give you a
brief, general outline of the particular phenomena fitting into these
several classes, and to give you, also, a general idea of the principal
methods employed to obtain the phenomenal manifestations in question.
We begin by calling your attention to the three general classes of
method employed to obtain the manifestation of clairvoyant phenomena,
namely: Psychometry, Crystal Gazing, and Clairvoyant Psychic States,
respectively.


Psychometry.

In Psychometry, the clairvoyant establishes the en rapport connection
with objects, persons or scenes, removed in space or in time, by means
of some physical object associated with the distant object, person or
scene; for instance, the physical objects may be a piece of clothing, a
bit of stone, a coin, a bit of jewelry, etc., which has been closely
associated with that which the clairvoyant desires to sense psychically.
The distinctive feature of this class of clairvoyant phenomena is this
CONNECTING LINK of physical objects. A writer has cleverly compared this
connecting link with the bit of clothing which the keen-scented
bloodhound is given to sniff in order that he may then discover by scent
the person sought, the latter having previously worn the bit of clothing
presented to the dog's sense of smell.


The "Psychic Scent."

Occultists have elaborated a technical theory to account for the
phenomena of Psychometry, or rather to account for the action of the
"connecting link" of the physical object employed to establish the
connection between clairvoyant and distant object, person, or scene. But
we do not think it advisable to enter into a discussion of these
elaborate, technical theories, which are apt to confuse the beginner,
and to distract his attention from the important facts of the case. We
think it is sufficient to say that the "connecting link," or physical
object, seems to carry along with it, in its inner substance or nature,
the vibrations of its past environment; and that the clairvoyant, coming
into receptive contact with such vibrations, is enabled with comparative
ease to follow up the psychic "scent" until he establishes clairvoyant
en rapport connection with the distant object, person, or scene
associated with the physical object. When it is remembered that the
physical "scent" of anything is merely a matter of the detection of
certain vibrations, the illustration is seen to be not so very far out
of the way after all.


Magnetic Affinity.

A somewhat celebrated investigator of psychic and occult phenomena has
said concerning this phases of Clairvoyance: "The untrained clairvoyant
usually cannot find any particular astral picture when it is wanted,
without some special link to put him en rapport with the subject
required. Psychometry is an instance in point. It seems as though there
were a sort of magnetic attachment or affinity between any particle of
matter and the record which contains its history--an affinity which
enables it to act as a kind of conductor between that record and the
faculties of anyone who can read it. For instance, I once brought from
Stonehenge a tiny fragment of stone, not larger than a pin's head, and
on putting this into an envelope and handing it to a psychometrist who
had no idea what it was, she at once began to describe that wonderful
ruin and the desolate country surrounding it, and then went on to
picture vividly what were evidently scenes from its early history,
showing that the infinitesimal fragment had been sufficient to put her
into communication with the records connected with the spot from which
it came. The scenes through which we pass in the course of our life seem
to act in the same way upon the cells of our brain as did the history of
Stonehenge upon that particle of stone. They establish a connection with
those cells by means of which our mind is put en rapport with that
particular portion of the records, and so we 'remember' what we have
seen."


Distant En Rapport.

One of the most familiar instances of the production of clairvoyant
phenomena by means of Psychometry is that illustrated in the above
quotation, namely the production of the en rapport relation with distant
scenes by means of the connecting link of some small object which had at
some time in the past been located at that point. In such cases the
psychometrist usually presses the small object up to his or her head,
and then induces a passive, receptive psychical condition; then, sooner
or later, the clairvoyant experiences a "sensation," or a "dream
picture" of the scene in question. Often, once the picture of the scene
is obtained, the clairvoyant may manifest more marked past-time
clairvoyance, in the direction of running back over the history of the
scene itself. The instance related in the above quotation is a case of
this kind. Similar cases are frequently met with by the investigator
along these lines, in which the clairvoyant is able to give the history
of certain places in ancient Egypt, from the connecting link of a piece
of mummy-cloth; or else to give a picture of certain events in
antediluvian times, from the connecting link of a bit of fossil
substance. The history of Psychometry is filled with remarkable
instances of this kind. Bullets gathered from battlefields also serve
very effectively as such psychometric connecting links. Old furniture,
old pictures, and old jewelry also are common objects serving to produce
wonderful phenomena of this kind. In fact, any physical object having
past-time or far-distant space connections may be employed effectively
in such experiments.


Psychic Underground Exploration.

Psychometry is frequently employed to describe underground or "mine"
conditions existing at the present time at the particular place from
which a particular piece of ore or mineral has been taken, which ore or
mineral has been handed the psychometrist to be used as the connecting
link. As many practical miners know from actual experience, many
valuable coal, zinc, lead, silver and gold mines have been successfully
located in this way. In such cases the psychometrist has been able to
follow up the psychic "scent" given by the piece of mineral, and thus to
describe the strata or veins of the mineral lying underground and
unopened by the pick or drill.


Psychic Detective Work.

Many cases are recorded by the investigators in which the psychometrist
is able to "sense" a particular locality, a house, a room, a place of
business, for instance, by means of the connecting link afforded by some
physical object formerly associated with the said location. Some writers
have called this class of psychometric phenomena "psychic spying" or
"psychic detective work." One writer records a case in which he gave to
a young psychometrist a penholder from the office of a lawyer, the
latter being located about eight hundred miles away; the psychometrist
then gave a perfect picture of the interior of the far-distant lawyer's
office, the scene across the street visible from the office window, and
certain events which were happening in the office and on the street at
that particular time--all of which report was verified in detail by
subsequent careful inquiry.


How to Psychometrize.

The following general remarks concerning Psychometry, given by a writer
on the subject, will be found interesting and instructive. The writer
says: "There are no special directions to be given the student in
psychometry. All that can be done is to suggest that each person should
try the experiments for himself, in order to find out whether he has, or
has not the psychometric power in some degree of development. He may be
able to develop his psychometric powers by the general methods given for
psychic development; but, in any event, he will find that actual
practice and experiment will do much for him in the direction of
experiment. Let the student take strange objects, and, sitting in a
quiet room with the object held to his forehead, endeavor to shut out
all thoughts coming from the outside world, and forget all his personal
affairs. In a short time, if the conditions be right, he will begin to
have flashes of scenes associated with the history of the object in
question. At first these impressions may be somewhat disconnected and
more or less confused, but before long there will be noticed a clearing
away of the scene, and the mental picture will become quite plain.
Practice will develop the power. The student should practice only when
alone or when in the presence of some sympathetic friend or friends. He
should always avoid discordant and inharmonious company while practicing
his psychic power. Many of the best psychometrists keep their physical
eyes closed when practicing this power, thus allowing the inner senses
to function without distraction from the outer senses.


Developing Psychometry.

"You have doubtless heard of the sensing of sealed letters spoken of as
pure clairvoyance. But this phase of phenomena properly belongs to the
realm of Psychometry. Letters frequently prove to be very excellent
connecting links in psychometric experiments. I advise the student to
begin with old letters. He will be surprised to discover how readily he
will begin to receive psychic impressions from the letters--either from
the person who wrote them, or from the place in which they were written,
or from some one connected with their subsequent history. One of the
most interesting experiments I ever witnessed in Psychometry was that in
which a letter that had been forwarded from place to place, until it had
gone completely around the globe, was psychometrized by a young Hindu
maid. Although ignorant of the outside world of foreign lands, the young
women was able to picture the people and scenery of every part of the
globe in which the letter had traveled. Her report was really an
interesting 'travelogue' of a trip around the world, given in tabloid
form. The student may obtain some interesting results in
psychometrizing old letters--but let him always be conscientious about
it, and be careful to refrain from divulging the secrets that will
become his during the course of these experiments. Let him be honorable
on the psychic plane as well as on the physical plane--more so, rather
than less so, in fact."


Varieties of Psychometry.

Another investigator along these lines gives the following instructive
comments regarding the practice of psychometric power: "Persons of a
highly-strung nervous organization, with large perceptive faculties make
the best psychometrists. Phlegmatic people seldom psychometrize clearly,
and usually lack receptivity to the finer forces. Letters, clothes,
hair, coins, ornaments, or jewels--in fact, almost any article which has
belonged to, or has been worn by, its possessor for any length of time,
will suffice to enable the psychometrist to relate himself to, and
glimpse impressions of, the personal sphere of that individual. Some
psychometrists succeed better with certain kinds of objects than with
others. Metals and minerals are not good 'conductors'--if we may use
that term--to some operators; while they are very satisfactory to
others. In the same way, some psychometrists are very good character
readers, others are very successful in the diagnosis of diseases; some
can read the book of Nature, while to others it is a sealed book, or
nearly so, but they are able to gauge the mental qualifications of their
visitors, while others realize their moral and spiritual states. Again,
some read the Past, and enter into the Present states or condition of
their clients, while others are successful in exercising prophetical
prevision. These differences may be modified, and the boundaries of the
perceptive power may be extended by self-study, experiment, and culture;
but every psychic has his qualifications and his limitations; one will
succeed where another may fail; hence it is well and wise for each one
to discover what he can do best, what sphere he can best occupy, and
then endeavor to fill it.


Psychometric "Getting in Touch."

"A psychometrist may, by holding a letter in his hand, or putting it to
his forehead, be able to perceive and delineate the personal appearance
of the writer thereof, and, in a way, to 'take on' his conditions,
describe his feelings and thoughts to such an extent as to identify
himself with him and to feel, for the time being, as if he, himself,
were the writer; he may even tell what is written in the letter,
although unable to see the writing. Human hair is found by some
psychometrists to give them the best means of coming into touch with
their subjects, and it is said that such hair should be cut from the
head just behind the ears, as close to the scalp as possible. It not
infrequently happens that a psychometrist gets started upon a false
trail, so to speak, and especially so when the inquirer is suspicious,
or where there is a mixture of psychic influences. A fan passed by a
lady to a sitter in the front row at a meeting, and held in the hands of
the latter for a few minutes while awaiting a chance to be handed to the
psychic, has resulted in a blending of vibratory influences which has
caused an imperfect or confused 'reading.' In one case the gentleman who
held the fan said 'I fully recognize the part of the description which
the lady does not admit--it applies to myself quite perfectly.' Hence
the necessity for care in providing articles for psychometrists in a
public meeting. A ring, for instance, which has been in the family for
generations, and handed from one wearer to another in the course of
years, may afford such a blending of psychic vibrations that the
psychometrist may be unable to sense distinctly each distinct stratum of
influence therein.


Psychometric Readings.

"The person who sits for the psychometrist for a 'reading' should not be
antagonistic nor frivolous, neither should he desire special
information, nor concentrate his thought forces upon any given point, as
otherwise he may dominate the psychic and thus mislead him into
perceiving only a reflex of his own hopes or fears. He will do well to
preserve an open mind, and an impartial though sympathetic mental
attitude, and then await results. It is unwise to interrupt, explain, or
question during the time that a delineation is being given, for by so
doing the psychic sphere is disturbed and the thought projections caused
to act like the breezes upon the surface of a lake, producing confused
and distorted appearances. It is best to allow the descriptions to be
given in its entirety before asking questions regarding any of its
details; it is quite possible or probable that the very points upon
which inquiries seem necessary will be more fully elucidated before the
close of the reading. If a special reading, and not a general one is
required--say, for instance, a diagnosis of diseased conditions--a hint
of what is desired at the outset should be sufficient."


Crystal Gazing, Etc.

The second of the three general classes of the methods employed to
obtain the manifestation of clairvoyant phenomena is that known as
Crystal Gazing. In this class of methods the clairvoyant establishes the
en rapport condition by means of a crystal, magic mirror, or similar
object, which serves principally to concentrate the psychic visual
powers to a focus, and thus to enable the psychic to raise his or her
psychic vibrations at that concentrated focused point.


Crystals and Bright Objects.

The use of crystals and other bright objects for this purpose has been
common to occultists and psychics at all times, past and present, and at
all places, oriental or occidental. The earlier races employed shining
pieces of quartz or other clear crystal rock for this purpose. Later
polished metals were used in the same way. The native soothsayers of
barbaric lands employ clear water, glowing embers, or sparks, for this
purpose. In some places the soothsayers hold drops of blood in the
hollow of their hands for divining purposes. Others bore a hole in the
ground, and fill it with water, and then gaze into it. Some tribes use
dark polished stones. A writer on the subject has said: "They stare into
a crystal ball, a cup, a mirror, a blot of ink, a drop of blood, a bowl
of water, a pond, water in a glass bowl, or almost any polished surface,
etc." In fact, it may be said that almost every object capable of
presenting a polished surface has been employed by some race as an aid
to psychic vision. In Europe and America, at the present day, quartz or
glass crystals are so used; but others obtain quite satisfactory
results from the use of watch crystals laid over a black cloth,
preferably a piece of black velvet cloth. Others use highly polished
bits of silver; while others content themselves with the use of a little
pool of black ink lying on the bottom of a small saucer, while others
have cups painted black on the inside, into which is poured water.


The Care of the Crystal.

There is no particular virtue in any particular object used for this
purpose, as such object acts merely to focus the psychic power of the
person, as has been said. Certainly the student should not fall into the
error of supposing that the crystal, or similar object, has any
miraculous or supernatural power whatsoever, it is simply an instrument,
like the microscope or telescope, nothing more or less. But, at the same
time, it must be admitted that there is much truth in the claim of
certain crystal gazers, to the effect that the use of a particular
crystal seems to have the effect of polarizing its molecules so as to
render it a more effective instrument in time. In fact, the phenomenon
seems to bear a close relation to the well known case of a long-used
violin becoming a more perfect instrument, and giving forth richer and
fuller notes than a new instrument. The longer a gazing crystal is used,
especially by the one person, the better does it seem to serve the
purposes of that particular person. Experts in crystal gazing insist
that the crystal gazer should keep his own crystal for his own
particular use, and not allow it to be used indiscriminately,
particularly in the case of strangers or of persons not sympathetic with
psychic subjects. They claim that each crystal becomes polarized
according to the individual character and needs of the person habitually
using it, and that it is unwise to allow others to disturb this quality
in it.


How to Use the Crystal.

The best authorities on the subject of crystal-gazing insist that all
experiments along the said lines should be conducted in a serious,
earnest manner, and that all frivolity or trifling should be avoided if
the best results are wished for. This, of course, is true concerning all
phases of psychic investigation, as all true students of the subject
know. All the authorities agree that the crystal gazer should sit with
the light behind his back, and never in front of him. While an earnest
steady gaze is desirable, there should be no straining of the eyes. As
one writer has said: "Gaze calmly at the crystal, but do not strain your
eyes. Do not try to avoid winking your eyes--there is a difference
between 'gazing' and 'staring,' remember." Some authorities advise that
the crystal gazer should make funnels of his hands, using them as he
would a pair of opera-glasses.


The "Milky Mist."

While some experimenters obtain results almost from the time of the
first trial, others find that it requires a number of sittings before
they begin to obtain even faint results. The psychic picture in the
crystal usually begins by the appearance of a cloudy "milky mist,"
succeeding the former transparent appearance of the crystal. The milky
cloud becomes more dense, and finally there appears in its midst a
faint form, outline, face, or scene of some kind. Some have compared
this gradual emergence of the picture to the gradual development of the
picture of the photographic plate when the latter is subjected to the
action of the developing fluid.


Classes of Psychic Pictures.

An English writer on the subject furnishes the following general
classification of the psychic pictures manifested in the process of
crystal gazing. The said authority might well have added that each and
every form of clairvoyant picturing is possible in crystal gazing; for
crystal gazing is merely one particular form or method of inducing
clairvoyant or psychic vision, and is not a distinct branch of psychic
phenomena in itself. The classification of the English authority,
however, is as follows:

"1. Images of something unconsciously observed. New reproductions,
voluntary or spontaneous, and bringing no fresh knowledge to the mind.

"2. Images of ideas unconsciously acquired from others. Some memory or
imaginative effort which does not come from the gazer's ordinary self.
Revivals of memory. Illustrations of thought.

"3. Images, clairvoyant or prophetic. Pictures giving information as to
something past, present, or future, which the gazer has no other chance
of knowing."


General Directions for Crystal Gazing.

An old English authority on the subject of crystal gazing handed down to
his students a certain set of general directions and rules to govern the
conduct of their experiments. These rules and directions have never
been improved upon by the later writers on the subject, according to the
opinion of the best authorities; and such stand today as perhaps the
simplest and best set of general rules and directions on this important
subject. For this reason we have thought it advisable to include the
same in this chapter, for the guidance of our own students. Here follow
the said general rules and directions:

"What is desired through the regular use of the translucent sphere is to
cultivate a personal degree of clairvoyant power, so that visions of
things or events, past, present, and future, may appear clearly in the
interior vision, or eye of the soul. In the pursuit of this effort only,
the crystal becomes at once a beautiful, interesting and harmless
channel of pleasure and instruction, shorn of dangers, and rendered
conducive to mental development. To the attainment of this desirable
end, attention is asked to the following practical directions, which, if
carefully followed, will lead to success:


Selection of Place, Etc.

"(1) Select a quiet room where you will be entirely undisturbed, taking
care that it is as far as possible free from mirrors, ornaments,
pictures, glaring colors, and the like, which may otherwise distract the
attention. The room should be of comfortable temperature, in accordance
with the time of year, neither hot nor cold. About 60 to 65 degrees
Fahr. is suitable in most cases, though allowance can be made where
necessary for natural differences in the temperaments of various
persons. Thus thin, nervous, delicately organized individuals, and those
of lymphatic and soft, easy-going, passive types, require a slightly
warmer apartment than the more positive class who are known by their
dark eyes, hair and complexion, combined with prominent joints. Should a
fire, or any form of artificial light be necessary, it should be
screened off, so as to prevent the light rays from being reflected in,
or in any other manner directly reaching the crystal. The room should
not be dark, but rather shadowed, or charged with a dull light, somewhat
such as prevails on a cloudy or wet day.


Adjusting the Crystal.

"(2) The crystal should be placed on its stand on a table, or it may
rest on a black velvet cushion, but in either case it should be
partially surrounded by a black silk or similar wrap or screen, so
adjusted as to cut off any undesirable reflection. Before beginning to
experiment, remember that most frequently nothing will be seen on the
first occasion, and possibly not for several sittings; though some
sitters, if strongly gifted with psychic powers in a state of
unconsciousness, and sometimes conscious degree of unfoldment, may be
fortunate enough to obtain good results at the first trial. If,
therefore, nothing is perceived during the first few attempts, do not
despair or become impatient, or imagine that you will never see
anything. There is a royal road to crystal vision, but it is open only
to the combined password of Calmness, Patience, and Perseverance. If at
the first attempt to ride a bicycle, failure ensues, the only way to
learn is to pay attention to the necessary rules, and to persevere daily
until the ability to ride comes naturally. Thus it is with the would-be
seer. Persevere in accordance with these simple directions, and success
will sooner or later crown your efforts.


Time of Sittings.

"(3) Commence by sitting comfortably with the eyes fixed upon the
crystal, not by a fixed stare, but with a steady, calm gaze, for ten
minutes only, on the first occasion. In taking the time it is best to
hang your watch at a distance, where, while the face is clearly visible,
the ticking is rendered inaudible. When the time is up, carefully put
the crystal away in its case, and keep it in a dark place, under lock
and key, allowing no one but yourself to handle it. At the second
sitting, which should be at the same place, in the same position, and at
the same time, you may increase the length of the effort to fifteen
minutes, and continue this period during the next five or six sittings,
after which the time may be gradually increased, but should in no case
exceed one hour. The precise order of repetition is always to be
followed until the experimenter has developed an almost automatic
ability to readily obtain results, when it need no longer be adhered to.


Other Persons Present.

"(4) Any person, or persons, admitted to the room, and allowed to remain
while you sit, should (a) keep absolute silence, and (b) remain seated
at a distance from you. When you have developed your latent powers,
questions may, of course, be put to you by one of those present, but
even then in a very gentle, or low and slow tone of voice; never
suddenly, or in a forceful manner.


Crystalline Vision.

"(5) When you find the crystals begin to look dull or cloudy, with small
pin-points of light glittering therein, like tiny stars, you may know
that you are commencing to obtain that for which you seek, viz.,
crystalline vision. Therefore, persevere with confidence. This condition
may, or may not, continue for several sittings, the crystal seeming at
times to alternatively appear and disappear, as in a mist. By and by
this hazy appearance, in its turn, will give way quite suddenly to a
blindness of the senses to all else but a blue or bluish ocean of space,
against which, as if it were a background, the vision will be clearly
apparent.


Physical Requirements.

"(6) The crystal should not be used soon after taking a meal, and care
should be taken in matters of diet to partake only of digestible foods,
and to avoid alcoholic beverages. Plain and nourishing food, and outdoor
exercise, with contentment of mind, or love of simplicity of living, are
great aids to success. Mental anxiety, or ill-health, are not conducive
to the desired end. Attention to correct breathing is of importance.


Determining Time of Fulfillment.

"(7) As regards the time at which events seen will come to pass, each
seer is usually impressed with regard thereto; but, as a general rule,
visions appearing in the extreme background indicate time more remote,
either past or future, than those perceived nearer at hand; while those
appearing in the foreground, or closer to the seer, denote the present
or immediate future.


Two Classes of Visions.

"(8) Two principal classes of vision will present themselves to the
sitter, viz.: (a) the Symbolic, indicated by the appearance of symbols
such as a flag, boat, knife, gold, etc., and (b) Actual Scenes and
Personages, in action or otherwise. Persons of a positive type of
organization, the more active, excitable, yet decided type, are most
likely to perceive symbolically, or allegorically; while those of a
passive nature usually receive direct or literal revelations. Both
classes will find it necessary to carefully cultivate truthfulness,
unselfishness, gratitude for what is shown, and absolute confidence in
the love, wisdom, and guidance of God Himself."


Time and Space in Crystal Gazing.

In the subsequent pages the student will perceive the different
manifestations of clairvoyant vision classified according to the
distinction of Time and Space. Clairvoyant vision may disclose objects,
scenes, or persons either near by in space, or far off in space; either
existing in present time, in past time, or in future time. Inasmuch as
the visions of crystal gazing are merely particular forms of clairvoyant
vision, it follows that all of the several above named distinctive forms
of vision are manifested in crystal gazing. The vision shown in the
crystal may be that of something very near in space, or perhaps very far
off in space, or removed in space only a moderate distance. Likewise
such vision may be based upon things existing at the present time, or at
some period of past time, or at some period of and visions of past,
present, or future things, events, persons, scenes--each or all of these
manifestations are possible to the clairvoyant vision of the crystal
gazer, and pictured in the reflecting surface of the crystal or other
shining surface employed by him in his experiments.


Direct Clairvoyance.

The third of the three general classes of the methods employed to obtain
the manifestation of clairvoyant phenomena is that known as Direct
Clairvoyance. In this class of methods the clairvoyant directly
establishes the en rapport connection with the past or present, near or
distant, objects, persons, scenes, or events, by means of raising his or
her psychic vibrations so as to become "in tune" with the finer
vibrations of Nature, without the aid of the physical objects required
in the methods of Psychometry and Crystal Gazing, respectively.


Trance Conditions.

Many clairvoyants, manifesting their powers by means of the methods of
Direct Clairvoyance, produce in themselves the condition of trance, or
semi-trance condition. Many students believe that these conditions are
absolutely necessary for the production of this kind of phenomena, but
they neglect, or are actually unaware of, the fact that many of the
highest forms of this class of clairvoyant phenomena are manifested by
clairvoyants who are no more in a trance condition, or that of
semi-trance, than those following the methods of Psychometry or Crystal
Gazing, respectively. All that is required is that the clairvoyant
maintain a quiescent mental attitude, shutting out the sounds, sights,
and thoughts of the outside world, and concentrating the full attention
upon the clairvoyant work before him or her. Some, it is true, pass
easily into the semi-trance, or even the full trance condition, but the
latter are not absolutely necessary states.


Clairvoyant Reverie.

A writer on the subject of Clairvoyance says: "The best authorities
instruct their pupils that the state of clairvoyant reverie may be
safely and effectively induced by the practice of mental concentration
alone. They advise positively against artificial methods. All that is
needed is that the consciousness be focused to a single point--become
'one pointed' as the Hindu teachers call it. The intelligent practice of
concentration accomplishes this without the necessity of any artificial
methods of development, or the production of abnormal psychic states.
You easily concentrate your full attention when you witness an
interesting play, or listen to a beautiful rendition of some great
masterpiece of musical composition, or gaze at some miracle of pictured
or sculptured art. In these cases your attention is completely occupied
with the interesting thing before you, so that you have almost
completely shut out the outer world of sound, sight, and thought--but
you are, nevertheless, perfectly wide awake and conscious. The same
thing is true when you read a very interesting book--the world is shut
out from your consciousness, and you are oblivious to the sights and
sounds around you. We frequently witness the sight of two lovers to whom
the outside world is non-existent for the time being, and to whom there
is nothing in the world except themselves. Again, persons often fall
into a 'brown study,' or 'day dream,' in which all consciousness of the
outside world seems to be shut out, yet the person is fully conscious
and wide awake. These mental states are very much akin to that of the
trained clairvoyant, and is the state which should be sought after by
all clairvoyants, whether they are following the methods of Psychometry,
Crystal Gazing, or that of Direct Clairvoyance--for the principle is one
and the same in all of such methods."


The Dawn of Clairvoyance.

A well-known authority on the subject of Psychic Development says:
"Occasional flashes of clairvoyance sometimes comes to the highly
cultured and spiritual-minded man, even though he may never have heard
of the possibility of training such a faculty. In his case such glimpses
usually signify that he is approaching that stage in his evolution when
these powers will naturally begin to manifest themselves. Their
appearance should serve as an additional stimulus to him to strive to
maintain that high standard of moral purity and mental balance without
which clairvoyance is a curse and not a blessing to its possessor.
Between those who are entirely unimpressionable and those who are in
full possession of clairvoyant power, there are many intermediate
stages. Students often ask how this clairvoyant faculty will first be
manifested in themselves--how they may know when they have reached the
stage at which its first faint foreshadowings are beginning to be
visible. Cases differ so widely that it is impossible to give to this
question any answer that will be universally applicable. Some people
begin by a plunge, as it were, and under some unusual stimulus become
able just for once to see some striking vision; and very often in such a
case, because the experience does not repeat itself, the seer comes in
time to believe that on that occasion he must have been the victim of
hallucination. Others begin by becoming intermittently conscious of the
brilliant colors and vibrations of the human aura; yet others find
themselves with increasing frequency seeing and hearing something to
which those around them are blind and deaf; others, again, see faces,
landscapes, or colored clouds floating before their eyes in the dark,
before they sink to rest; while perhaps the commonest experience of all
is that of those who begin to recollect with greater and greater
clearness what they have seen and heard on other planes during sleep."


Methods of Development.

The same authority, after warning students against attempting to develop
their psychic powers by unnatural and harmful practices, such as
self-hypnotism, self-stupefication, etc., gives the following excellent
advice concerning the normal development of clairvoyant and other high
psychic powers and faculties: "There is one practice which if adopted
carefully and reverently can do no harm to any human being, yet from
which a very pure type of clairvoyance has sometimes been developed--and
that is the practice of Meditation. Let a man choose a certain time
every day--a time when he can rely upon being quiet and undisturbed,
though preferably in the daytime rather than at night--and set himself
at that time to keep his mind for a few minutes entirely free from all
earthly thoughts of any kind whatsoever; and, when that is achieved, to
direct the whole force of his being towards the highest ideal he happens
to know. He will find that to gain perfect control of thought is
enormously more difficult than he supposes, but when he attains it this
cannot but be in every way more beneficial to him, and as he grows more
and more able to elevate and concentrate his thoughts, he may gradually
find that new worlds are opening before his sight. As a preliminary
training towards the satisfactory achievement of such meditation, he
will find it desirable to make a practice of concentration in the
affairs of daily life--even in the smallest of them. If he writes a
letter, let him think of nothing else but that letter until it is
finished; if he reads a book, let him see to it that his thought is
never allowed to wander away from his author's meaning. He must learn to
hold his mind in check, and to be master of that also, as well as of his
lower passions; he must patiently labor to acquire absolute control of
his thoughts, so that he will always know exactly what he is thinking
about, and why--so that he can use his mind, and turn it or hold it
still, as a practiced swordsman turns his weapon where he will."



PART V

CLAIRVOYANCE: PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE


As we have said in the preceding chapter, in our consideration of the
general subject of Clairvoyance, there is possible a general
classification of clairvoyant phenomena according to general
distinctions, as follows: (1) PRESENT CLAIRVOYANCE, in which the objects
perceived by the clairvoyant are present in time and in space, although
invisible to normal sight; (2) SPACE CLAIRVOYANCE, in which the
clairvoyant vision includes objects and scenes removed in space from the
normal perception of the clairvoyant; and (3) TIME CLAIRVOYANCE, in
which the clairvoyant perceives objects or scenes removed from him in
past time, or future time.

While the general methods of manifesting these various forms of
clairvoyant power are practically the same, yet the nature of these
several forms of phenomena vary considerably, as we shall see when we
come to consider them in detail in the following pages: this is
particularly true in the case of the distinction between past-time
clairvoyant phenomena, and future-time clairvoyant phenomena--the
difference between the perception of what has been, and that which has
not yet been.


Present Clairvoyance.

In what is called Present Clairvoyance the objects perceived by the
clairvoyant are present in time and in space, at the moment and place of
the perception, although invisible to normal sight. It is seen at once
that if the object seen clairvoyantly is present in time and in space to
the clairvoyant, and yet is incapable of being perceived by the normal
sight of the clairvoyant, then that object must be capable of being
perceived only through vibrations above the normal range of the human
senses. Perhaps the precise nature of this class of clairvoyant
perceptions will be better understood by a more detailed description of
the objects actually perceived by clairvoyant vision of this mode of
manifestation.


The Human Aura.

In the first place, this mode of clairvoyant vision discloses the
interesting phenomena concerned with the human aura, or psychic
atmosphere which surrounds the human body for a space of several feet,
assuming an egg-shaped form. A writer says on this point: "The trained
clairvoyant vision sees the human aura as a nebulous hazy substance,
like a luminous cloud, surrounding the person for two or three feet on
each side of his body, becoming more dense near the body, and gradually
becoming less dense as it extends away from the body. It has a
phosphorescent appearance, with a peculiar tremulous motion manifesting
through its substance. The clairvoyant sees the human aura as composed
of all the colors of the spectrum, the combination shifting with the
changing mental and emotional states of the person. But, in a general
way, it may be said that each person has his or her distinctive astral
auric colors, depending upon his or her general character or
personality. Each mental state, or emotional manifestation, has its own
particular shade or combination of shades of auric coloring. This
beautiful kaleidoscopic spectacle has its own meaning to the occultist
with clairvoyant vision, for he is thus able to read the character and
general mental states of the person by means of studying his auric
colors. The human aura is not in a state of calm phosphorescence,
however. On the contrary, it sometimes manifests great flames, like
those of a fiery furnace, which shoot forth great tongues, and dart
forth suddenly in certain directions toward the objects attracting them.
Under great emotional excitement the auric flames move around in swift
circling whirlpools, or else swirl away from a centre. Again, it seems
to throw forth tiny glistening sparks of psychic vibrations, some of
which travel for a great distance.


The Prana Aura.

"The clairvoyant vision is also able to discern what is called the
'prana aura' of a person. By this term is indicated that peculiar
emanation of vital force which surrounds the physical body of each and
every person. In fact, many persons of but slight clairvoyant power, who
cannot sense the auric colors, are able to perceive this prana aura
without trouble. It is sometimes called the 'health aura,' or 'physical
aura.' It is colorless, or rather about the shade of clear glass,
diamond, or water. It is streaked with very minute, bristle-like lines.
In a state of good health these fine lines are stiff like toothbrush
bristles; while in the case of poor health these lines droop, curl, and
present a furlike appearance. It is sometimes filled with minute
sparkling particles, like tiny vibratory motion. To the clairvoyant
vision the prana aura appears like the vibrating heated air arising from
a fire, or stove, or from the heated earth in summertime. If the student
will close his eyes partially, and peer through narrowed eyelids, he
will in all probability be able to perceive this prana aura surrounding
the body of some healthy, vigorous person--particularly if that person
be standing in a dim light. Looking closely, he will see the peculiar
vibratory motion, like heated air, at a distance of about two inches
from the body of the person. It requires a little practice in order to
acquire the knack of perceiving these vibrations--a little experimenting
in order to get just the right light on the person--but practice will
bring success, and you will be repaid for your trouble. In the same way,
the student may by practice acquire the faculty of perceiving his own
prana aura. The simplest way to obtain this last mentioned result is to
place your fingers (spread out into fan-shape) against a black
background, in a dim light. Then gaze at the fingers through narrowed
eyelids, and half-closed eyes. After a little practice, you will see a
fine thin line surrounding your fingers on all sides--a semi-luminous
border of prana aura. In most cases this border of aura is colorless,
but sometimes a very pale yellowish hue is perceived. The stronger the
vital force of the person, the stronger and brighter will this border of
prana aura appear. The aura surrounding the fingers will appear very
much like the semi-luminous radiance surrounding a gas-flame, or the
flame of a candle, which is familiar to everyone."


The Auric Colors.

Another writer says of the clairvoyant perception of the human aura: "As
he looks, the clairvoyant will see himself surrounded by the luminous
mist of the aura, flashing with all sorts of brilliant colors, and
constantly changing hue and brilliancy with every variation of the
person's thought and feelings. He will see this aura flooded with the
beautiful rose-color of pure affection, the rich blue of devotional
feeling, the hard, dull brown of selfishness, the deep scarlet of anger,
the horrible lurid red of sensuality, the livid grey of fear, the black
clouds of hatred and malice, or any of the other hundredfold indications
so easily to be read in it by the practiced eye; and thus it will be
impossible for any persons to conceal from his the real state of their
feelings on any subject. Not only does the astral aura show him the
temporary result of the emotion passing through it at the moment, but it
also gives him, by an arrangement and proportion of its colors when in a
condition of perfect rest, a clue to the general disposition and
character of its owner."


Thought Forms.

Another phase of clairvoyant phenomena of this class is that of the
perception of "thought forms," as they are called by occultists. As all
students of occultism know, a strong thought or emotion manifests a
certain high vibratory motion, and takes upon itself a vibratory "form"
which is plainly perceptible to the trained clairvoyant vision. These
thought-forms manifest a great variety in appearance and character. Some
appear in a faint wave-like form, something like the tiny waves caused
by the dropping of a pebble in a pond of water. Others take on a
whirlpool form, rotating and whirling as they move through space. Others
appear like whirling rings, similar in general form to the "ring" puffed
forth from the mouth of a cigar smoker, or from the funnel of a
locomotive. Others glow like great opals. Others appear like jets
emitted from the spout of a teakettle. Others twist along like a
corkscrew. Others appear like exploding bombs. Others branch out arms
like a devil-fish, which wriggle in all directions, as if striving to
attach themselves to some object upon which they wish to take hold.


The X-Ray Sense.

Another phase of clairvoyant phenomena of this general class is that
which may be called "the X-Ray Sense," for indeed it enables the
clairvoyant to see through a brick wall, or other material obstacle, or
through a sealed letter, etc. The higher psychic vibrations easily pass
through the most solid object, just as do the X-Rays, and consequently
the clairvoyant is able to see what is going on on the other side of a
brick wall, or the walls of a house. Likewise, the clairvoyant vision is
able to pierce through the dense earth, and to perceive veins of mineral
or metal lying concealed beneath.


Microscopic Vision.

Another phase of clairvoyant power of this general class, but one not
nearly so common as those above mentioned, is described by a well-known
occultist as follows: "Another strange power of which the clairvoyant
may find himself in possession is that of magnifying at will the
minutest physical particle to any desired size, as through a
microscope--though no microscope ever made, or ever likely to be made,
possesses even a thousandth part of this psychic magnifying power. By
its means the hypothetical molecule and atom postulated by science
becomes visible and living realities to the occult student, and on this
closer examination he finds them to be much more complex in their
structure than the scientific man has yet realized them to be. It also
enables him to follow with the closest attention and the most lively
interest all kinds of electrical, magnetic, and other etheric action;
and when some of the specialists in these branches of science are able
to develop the power to see these things whereof they speak so facilely,
some very wonderful and beautiful revelations may be expected."


Space Clairvoyance.

In what is called Space Clairvoyance the objects, persons, scenes, or
events perceived by the clairvoyant are removed in space from him--often
being located at points in space thousands of miles distant, in fact.
The pages of works upon occultism, and those devoted to the recording of
proved instances gathered by the societies for psychical research, are
filled with the most interesting cases of this form of clairvoyant
vision. Instances are recorded, upon the very best possible authority,
in which persons with clairvoyant powers have been perfectly cognizant
of events occurring on the other side of the world, or across the
Atlantic or Pacific Oceans. In fact, it would seem that distance and
space are practically wiped out in this form of clairvoyant phenomena,
and that it is just as easy to see clairvoyantly over the space of a
thousand miles, as over that of a hundred feet--the principle involved
being precisely the same.


The Psychic Telescope.

Space Clairvoyance, or Distant Clairvoyance, is manifested in the form
of Psychometry, Crystal Gazing, or Direct Clairvoyance, as we have said.
We do not consider it necessary to record here any typical instances of
this phase of phenomena, as the many books on this subject are chiefly
devoted to a recital thereof, and every student is more or less
acquainted with the same. The whole matter may be summed up by saying
that in this form of clairvoyant vision, there is manifested what might
be called a "psychic telescope with an X-Ray attachment," thus enabling
one to see at any distance, and through any intervening objects. This
gives you a mental picture of the process.


Radio-Activity.

In the theory of vibratory forces, as set forth in the earlier chapters
of this book, we have the only scientific explanation of the phenomena
of distant clairvoyance. Modern science, in its teachings regarding the
radio-activity of physical objects, has thrown much additional light on
this subject, and has corroborated the ancient occult teachings on the
subject. These rays of higher vibratory power are like the rays of light
or heat, although of a much higher rate of intensity and vibratory
motion, and though the most delicate scientific instruments are able to
register some of these, it is still practically admitted by science that
the highest of these radio-active vibrations are beyond the scope and
field of even the most sensitive instrument yet known to science. This
is saying much when we remember that some of the delicate instruments of
science are so sensitive that they are able to register the heat waves
of a candle at the distance of one mile; while others are able to record
the presence of certain chemical elements in the most distant of the
visible stars, by means of the light waves carrying certain forms of
vibration.


Sensing the Higher Vibrations.

Under the radio-active theory it is quite reasonable to conceive of the
clairvoyant sense being able to register and interpreting these higher
vibrations which are beyond the power of even the most delicate
instruments of science. It must be admitted that the existence of such
vibrations being granted--and science tacitly admits their
presence--then ordinary distances on earth would be no barrier at all to
the action of clairvoyant vision capable of registering them. Moreover,
in such case all intervening objects would be penetrated by these waves,
and as a writer has well said, "they would be able to cross one another
to infinity in all directions without entanglement, precisely as the
vibrations of ordinary light do." Physical science and psychic science
at last seem to have arrived at a common ground of understanding, and
many of the most advanced scientists do not hesitate to admit this
fact, though their more conservative brethren hesitate to do so.


Viewing Distant Scenes.

A writer has said of this form of clairvoyant perception: "The view of a
distant scene obtained in this way is in many ways not unlike that seen
through a telescope. Human figures usually appear very small, like those
upon a distant stage, but in spite of their diminutive size they are
clear as though they were close by. Sometimes it is possible by this
means to hear what is said as well as to see what is done; but as in the
majority of cases this does not happen, we must consider it rather as
the manifestation of an additional power than as a necessary corollary
of the faculty of sight. It will be observed that in cases of this kind
the clairvoyant does not actually leave his physical body at all--he
simply manufactures for himself, and uses, a kind of psychic telescope.
Consequently he has the use of his physical powers while he is examining
the distant scene; for example, his voice usually describes what he sees
even while he is in the act of making the observation."


Time Clairvoyance.

In what is called Time Clairvoyance the clairvoyant is able to perceive
objects, persons, scenes, and events removed from him in past time or
future time. That is to say, the clairvoyant perceives things which have
existed in the physical world in times long past, which things have long
since vanished from physical existence; or, on the other hand, he
perceives things which belong to future existence--this which have
never as yet been in physical existence, and of course are not in such
existence at the present time. The careful student will see at once that
the principle of manifestation governing these two respective phases of
clairvoyance must be quite different; and, accordingly, the two
respective phases must be considered separately and apart from each
other.


Past Time Clairvoyance.

In what is known as Past Time Clairvoyance there is the manifestation of
clairvoyant vision in the direction of scenes and occurrences of the
past. Here, the clairvoyant perceives the events and scenes of past time
just as clearly and plainly as if such were present before him in time
and in space. Just as in Distant Clairvoyance it is just as easy for the
clairvoyant to see things at a great distance as those at a short
distance, so in Past Time Clairvoyance it is just as easy for the
clairvoyant to see things and events occurring five thousand years ago
as it is to see things occurring one year ago, or one week ago for that
matter. The principle involved is the same in either case.


The Mystery of Seeing the Past.

To persons investigating the phenomena of clairvoyance for the first
time, however, there seems to be a much greater mystery attached to the
phenomena of Past Clairvoyance than in the case of Distant Clairvoyance.
To such persons it seems that while the perception of distant objects,
scenes, and events is wonderful and mysterious, still at the last it is
merely the perception of something now actually in existence--merely
the extension of one's normal powers of vision so as to include objects
beyond the range of the ordinary vision, but, still, actually in
existence though at a distance. The idea of the telescope enables the
mind to grasp the naturalness of this kind of phenomena. But when it
comes to the perception of things, scenes, and events WHICH ARE NO
LONGER IN EXISTENCE--things which have passed entirely out of
existence--the mystery seems to be increased, and incredulity becomes
more insistent. But to the occultist there is really no more mystery in
the one case than in the other--both sets of phenomena are seen to be
perfectly reasonable and within the realms of Nature. Let us now see how
and why the occultists view the matter in this light.


Analogies on the Physical Plane.

We may find many correspondences on the physical plane to serve as
illustrations of the phenomena of Past Time Clairvoyance, if we will but
look for them. For instance, when we withdraw a heated stove from a
room, the heat remains in the room. Likewise, though a woman bearing the
odor of a certain perfume on her clothing may have passed from a house,
the odor still lingers there. The wake of an ocean steamer is often
visible for hours after the ship has passed from sight. As modern
science expressed it: "Causes continue to exist in their Effects."


Thousand-Year-Old Light.

But we have a much more striking illustration and correspondence in the
case of the transmission of light from the distant stars, which we will
do well to carefully consider. Light travels at the rate of 186,000
miles per second. A "light-year," as known to astronomers, means the
distance traversed by a light wave (at the stated rate of travel) during
the period of one of our earth years. Some of the distant stars are
estimated to be fully one thousand light-years distant from us; or, in
other words, the light we now perceive as coming from them really is the
light that left them one thousand years ago. If one of these stars were
to be destroyed, observers on this earth would not become aware of it
for a thousand years. The star whose light we may now perceive may
actually have been destroyed nearly one thousand years ago. Other stars
are only one hundred light-years removed from us in space; others only a
few years; others only a few hours. But the principle is just the same
in all cases, namely, that we see the stars not as they are at the
present moment, but as they were when the light left them, perhaps many
years ago. Thus, as you see, we may actually perceive events long after
their happening.


Reading the Light Waves.

Now, if our physical vision was sufficiently powerful to magnify objects
on the stars, or if we had instruments to do this for us, we could
actually witness scenes, objects, persons and events which had passed
out of existence a thousand years ago. Their records are present in
these light waves from the stars, and all that is needed is an eye or a
telescope sufficiently strong to register them upon our mind. In a
fanciful story written by Camille Flammarion, the French astronomer,
many years ago, the principal character relates how, traveling in the
astral body, he was able to witness the events of the French Revolution
which had occurred many years before, by simply proceeding to the
necessary distance from the earth and there perceiving the registered
records in the earth's light-waves traveling through space at the rate
of 186,000 miles a second. In fact, by getting at the right distance he
was able to see even the events of his own childhood and youth, every
event of his life, in fact, up to the moment of his leaving the earth.
This story, fanciful as it is, nevertheless is based upon scientific
facts, and its happenings would be quite possible for a being capable of
traveling at a sufficiently rapid rate through space, and also possessed
of the power of magnifying the records of light rays. In fact, a person
on earth possessing the power of Distant Clairvoyance might be able to
duplicate these feats, providing he were able to come in rapport contact
with one of these light-waves bearing the past-time records. Think for a
moment, and you will grasp the point of this statement.


The Akashic Plane.

But this, however, is but an illustration of the correspondence on the
ordinary physical plane of certain things on a higher plane of Nature.
Past Time Clairvoyance is not dependent upon light-waves, or any other
of the lesser phases of vibratory activity. Instead, it depends entirely
upon the phenomena and facts of a higher plane of Nature--a plane which
occultists have called the Akashic Plane. Some occultists prefer the
general term, "the Astral Plane," but the former term is a closer and
more definite one. The Akashic Plane, as known to occultists, contains
the impressions or "records" of all events that have happened on the
earth plane during the present cycle of earth manifestation. The very
subtle and tenuous substance of the Akashic Plane--the term "etheric"
may best describe the nature of this substance--contains traces and
impressions of all the happenings of the past of this earth; and such
impressions may be read and seen by the clairvoyant who has developed
sufficiently high powers of vision. These Akashic Records have well been
called "the substantial memory of the earth." Upon the subtle etheric
substance of the Akashic Plane are registered the records of every
event, thing, object, happening, or activity of the earth which has
existed or been manifested from the very beginning of the present cycle
of the earth's existence. These records will, it is claimed, persist
until the final ending of the present earth cycle.


The Akashic Records.

The clairvoyant whose powers of Past Time Clairvoyance have been
developed sufficiently, and who has mastered the art of concentration of
his psychic attention, manages to come into more or less perfect en
rapport condition contact with these Akashic Records, and is thus
enabled to read from them what he sees there. To him it actually seems
as if he were seeing the actions of things in present existence, and
many excellent clairvoyants are ignorant of the existence of the Akashic
Records, though they habitually read the contents thereof; these
clairvoyants know simply that they "see" these past happenings--they
have not the faintest conception of how they are able to see them. This
is no more strange than would be the case of a man who witnessed a
moving picture for the first time, and who was ignorant of the mechanism
involved in the showing of the picture, the existence of the film,
etc.,--such a man would simply know that he "saw" the things, and he
might even believe that he was gazing upon an actual scene in real life.


Degrees of Clairvoyant Vision.

There is, of course, many degrees of power and development among
clairvoyants of this class; and as a result we have many varying degrees
of correctness in their readings. Some have merely a glimpse, as through
dim glasses; and some obtain merely distorted reflections similar to
those of a scene reflected into the troubled waters of a lake. Others
see far more clearly; but it is reserved for the trained occultist to
read the records as he would read the scene before him on the physical
plane. The clairvoyant does not become infallible simply by reason of
the perhaps only faint awakening of his clairvoyant vision--he is not
suddenly gifted with omniscience, as some seem to suppose. There are
almost always elements of error or imperfect visioning, except among the
advanced adepts of the occult world.


"The Memory of Nature."

A celebrated occultist says concerning the point just raised:
"Comparatively few accounts of persons possessing this faculty of
looking into the past are to be found in the literature of the subject,
and it might therefore be supposed to be much less common than
prevision, or future-time clairvoyance. I suspect, however, that the
truth is rather that it is much less commonly recognized. It may easily
happen that a person may see a picture of the past without recognizing
it as such, unless there happens to be in it something which attracts
special attention, such as a figure in armor, or in antique costume. It
is probable that occasional glimpses of these reflections of the Akashic
Records are commoner than the published accounts would lead us to
believe. As usual, we find examples of all degrees of the power to see
into this 'memory of Nature,' from the trained man who can consult the
record for himself at will, down to the person who gets nothing but
occasional vague glimpses, or has even perhaps had only one such
glimpse. But even the man who possesses this faculty only partially and
occasionally may still find it of the deepest interest.


Involuntary Clairvoyance.

"The psychometrist, who needs an object physically connected with the
past in order to bring it all into life again around him; and the
crystal-gazer who can sometimes direct his less certain astral telescope
to some historic scene of long ago, may both derive the greatest
enjoyment from the exercise of their respective gifts, even though they
may not always understand exactly how their results are produced, and
may not have them fully under control under all circumstances. In many
cases of the lower manifestation of these powers we find that they are
exercised unconsciously; many a crystal-gazer watches scenes from the
past without ever realizing that he is in effect psychometrizing the
various objects around him as he happens to touch them or stand near
them. It would be well for all students to bear in mind that occultism
is the apotheosis of common sense, and that every vision that comes to
them is not necessarily a picture from the Akashic Records, nor every
experience a revelation from on high. It is far better to err on the
side of healthy scepticism than that of over-credulity; and it is an
admirable rule never to hunt for an occult explanation of anything when
a plain and obvious physical one is available. Our duty is to keep our
balance always, and never to lose our self-control, but to take a
reasonable, common-sense view of whatever may happen to us."


Future Time Clairvoyance.

In what is known technically as Future Time Clairvoyance, we have the
manifestation of the clairvoyant vision in the direction of scenes and
events of the future. In this phase of clairvoyance the seer perceives
the events and scenes of future time just as if they were present before
him at that very moment. This phase of clairvoyance is far rarer and
more uncommon than any of the other phases. In fact, it is so seldom met
with in its perfection that its manifestation is a matter of greatest
interest to those who make a study of the subject. It occasionally
occurs in flashes, and can not be produced at will by the ordinary
clairvoyant. Unfortunately, its very rarity and uncommonness cause it to
be counterfeited and imitated by unprincipled persons.


Seeing What Has Not Yet Happened.

The student who reasons carefully and logically usually meets with what
to him, at least at first, seems to be an unsurmountable obstacle in
the way of a rational explanation of Future Time Clairvoyance--when it
comes to an understanding of how anyone can expect to see, or can really
see, THAT WHICH HAS NEVER HAPPENED, he throws up his hands in despair.
But, in this as in all the other phases of clairvoyant phenomena, there
is found a reason and cause, although it requires some subtle thinking
to find it, and to grasp it even when it is found. Let us see what are
the highest teachings on this subject, as announced by the careful
thinkers along the lines for many centuries.


Simple Prevision.

There is a phase of prevision, or prophecy of coming events, however,
that is not true clairvoyance at all, but simply the subconscious
workings of the mind along the lines of a supernormal perception of the
laws of cause and effect. Give the active subconscious mental faculties
the perception of a strong existing cause, and it will often reason out
the probable effect (the almost certain effect, in fact) of that cause,
even though that effect lies in the mist of the future. The subconscious
mind works upon the principle that "coming events cast their shadows
before." But this, at the best, is not true clairvoyance--it is merely
the statement of "probable" results, and effects of existing causes,
wonderfully exact and clear though the deduction may be in some cases.
But a thousand-and-one unforeseen things may arise to completely upset
the prediction, or deduction, for it is never actually true until it
occurs. We must look further for real instances of Future Clairvoyance.


The Nature of Time.

That eminent scientist, Sir Oliver Lodge, offers an ingenious and
interesting, though very technical explanation of this class of
clairvoyant phenomena as follows: "Time is but a relative mode of
regarding things; we progress through phenomena at a certain definite
pace, and this subjective advance we interpret in an objective manner,
as if events moved necessarily in this order and at this precise rate.
But that may be only one mode of regarding them. The events may be in
some sort of existence always, both past and future, and it may be we
who are arriving at them, not they which are happening. The analogy of a
traveler in a railway train is useful; if he could never leave the
train, nor alter its pace, he would probably consider the landscapes as
necessarily successive, and be unable to conceive their co-existence. We
perceive, therefore, a possible fourth dimensional aspect about time,
the inexorableness of whose flow may be a natural part of our present
limitations. And if we once grasp the idea that past and future may be
actually existing, we can recognize that they may have a controlling
influence on all present action, and the two together may constitute the
'higher plane' or totality of things after which, it seems to me, we are
impelled to seek, in connection with the directing of form or
determinism, and the action of human beings consciously directed to a
definite and preconceived end."


The Oriental Teaching.

The Hindus, and other oriental peoples, however, have a clearly defined
and positive explanation of the phenomena of Future Time Clairvoyance,
which must be included in our consideration of the subject, even though
it does involve certain metaphysical or philosophical conceptions which
are apart from our present inquiry as conducted in this book. The
oriental theory is based upon that basic conception of the eastern
philosophies which hold that the beginning, duration, and ending of any
particular one of the infinitude of successive universes created by the
Supreme Being, is to that Being but as a single moment of time; or, as
the celebrated Hindu proverb runs: "The creation, duration, and
destruction of a universe is but the time of the twinkling of an eye to
Brahman." In other words, that to the Supreme Being, all the past, all
the present, all the future of the universe, must be as but a single
thought in a single moment of time--an instantaneous act of
consciousness.


The Eternal Now.

A writer on this subject has said: "Those occultists and metaphysicians
who have thought long and deeply upon the ultimate facts and nature of
the universe, have dared to think that there must exist some absolute
consciousness--some absolute mind--which must perceive the past,
present, and future of the universe as one happening; as simultaneously
and actively present at one moment of absolute time. They reason that
just as a man may see at one moment of his time some particular event
which might appear as a year to some minute form of life and mind--the
microscopic creatures in a drop of water, for instance--so that which
seems as a year, or as a hundred years, to the mind of man, may appear
as the happening of a single moment of a higher scale of time to some
exalted Being, or form of consciousness on a higher plane."


Absolute Time

The daring flights of metaphysical fancy have resulted in the general
acceptance, on the part of advanced metaphysicians, of the postulate of
the existence of an Absolute Mind, independent of Time and Space, to
which everything exists HERE and NOW. To such a mind the entire sequence
of events in the life-history of a universe would appear as a single
unit of conscious experience--an infinitesimal point of time in
Eternity. The human imagination staggers at the idea, but logical
thought finally posits it as an unescapable conclusion of extended
thought. This, possibly, is the secret of Future Time Clairvoyance,
Prevision, Second Sight, etc.


The Occult Hypothesis.

But it must not be supposed that the oriental occultists hold for a
moment the theory that the clairvoyant actually obtains access to the
Divine Mind or Absolute Mind, when he experiences this vision of future
events--their idea is very different from this. These occultists teach
that the phenomena of each plane are reflected with more or less
clearness upon the substance of the planes beneath it. This being so, it
is readily seen that the seer who is able to contact with any of the
higher planes of being might thereupon see the reflection, more or less
clear, or more or less distorted, of that which is present in its
completeness on the highest plane of all. This is a mere hint at the
quite complicated occult teaching on this subject; but the capable
thinker will be able to work out the full theory for himself in his own
way. The important fact is that Future Time Clairvoyance is a
reality--that it is a matter of actual experience of the race, and one
that has been authenticated by the investigations of such learned bodies
as the Society for Psychical Research, of England, and other societies
of the same kind in different lands. Future Time Clairvoyance, Second
Sight, Prevision, etc., are facts as fully accepted by such societies as
are the facts of telepathy.


"The Prophecy of Cazotte."

Students of history are familiar with the numerous recorded instances of
marvelous prophecy of future events, wonderful predictions of events to
come, which have been fully corroborated and verified by subsequent
events. We lack the space in this book to record more than one of the
most celebrated of these historical prophecies, namely the Prophecy of
Cazotte. We have thought it advisable to reproduce the story of this
celebrated prophecy, as told by La Harpe, the French writer, who was
present upon the occasion. It may be mentioned that the fact of this
prophecy, and its literal fulfilment, is a part of French history. The
time was just previous to the French Revolution, and the tale as told by
La Harpe is as follows:


The Dinner of the Elect.

"It appears as but yesterday, and yet, nevertheless, it was at the
beginning of the year 1788. We were dining with one of the brethren at
the Academy--a man of considerable wealth and genius. The conversation
became serious; much admiration was expressed on the revolution of
thought which Voltaire had effected, and it was agreed that it was his
first claim to the reputation he enjoyed. We concluded that the
revolution must soon be consummated; that it was indispensable that
superstition and fanaticism should give way to philosophy, and we began
to calculate the probability of the period when this should be, and
which of the present company should live to see it. The oldest
complained that they could hardly flatter themselves with the hope; the
younger rejoiced that they might entertain this very probable
expectation; and they congratulated the Academy especially for having
prepared this great work, and for having been the rallying point, the
centre, and the prime mover of the liberty of thought.


The Illuminatus.

"One only of the guests had not taken part in all the joyousness of this
conversation, and had even gently and cheerfully checked our splendid
enthusiasm. This was Cazotte, an amiable and original man, but unhappily
infatuated with the reveries of the Illuminati. He spoke, and with the
most serious tone, saying: 'Gentlemen, be satisfied; you will all see
this great and sublime revolution, which you so much desire. You know
that I am a little inclined to prophecy; I repeat, you will see it.' He
was answered by the common rejoinder: 'One need not be a conjurer to see
that.' He answered: 'Be it so; but perhaps one must be a little more
than conjurer for what remains for me to tell you. Do you know what
will be the consequences of this revolution--what will be the
consequences to all of you, and what will be the immediate result--the
well-established effect--the thoroughly recognized consequences to all
of you who are here present?'


The Beginning of the Prophecy.

"'Ah,' said Condorcet, with his insolent and half-suppressed smile, 'let
us hear--a philosopher is not sorry to encounter a prophet--let us
hear?' Cazotte replied: 'You, Monsieur de Condorcet--you will yield up
your last breath on the floor of a dungeon; you will die from poison,
which you will have taken in order to escape from execution--from poison
which the happiness of that time will oblige you to carry around your
person. You, Monsieur de Chamfort, you will open your veins with
twenty-two cuts of a razor, and yet will not die till some months
afterward.' These personages looked at each other, and laughed again.
Cazotte continued: 'You, Monsieur Vicq d'Azir, you will not open your
own veins, but you will cause yourself to be bled six times in one day,
during the paroxysm of the gout, in order to make more sure of your end,
and you will die in the night.'


The Shadow of the Guillotine.

"Cazotte went on: 'You, Monsieur de Nicolai, you will die on the
scaffold; you, Monsieur Bailly, on the scaffold; you, Monsieur de
Malesherbes, on the scaffold.' 'Ah, God be thanked,' exclaimed Roucherm,
'and what of I?' Cazotte replied: 'You! you also will die on the
scaffold.' 'Yes,' replied Chamfort, 'but when will all this happen?'
Cazotte answered: 'Six years will not pass over, before all that I have
said to you shall be accomplished.' Here I (La Harpe) spoke, saying:
'Here are some astonishing miracles, but you have not included me in
your list.' Cazotte answered me, saying: 'But you will be there, as an
equally extraordinary miracle; you will then be a Christian!' Vehement
exclamations on all sides followed this startling assertion. 'Ah!' said
Chamfort, 'I am comforted; for if we perish only when La Harpe shall be
a Christian, we are immortal!'


The Fall of the Great.

"'Then,' observed Madame la Duchesse de Grammont, 'as for that, we
women, we are happy to be counted for nothing in this revolution; when I
say for nothing, it is not that we do not always mix ourselves up with
them a little; but it is a received maxim that they take no notice of
us, and of our sex.' 'Your sex, ladies,' said Cazotte, 'your sex will
not protect you this time; and you had far better meddle with nothing,
for you will be treated entirely as men, without any difference
whatever.' 'But what, then, are you really telling us of, Monsieur
Cazotte? You are preaching to us the end of the world.' 'I know nothing
on that subject; but what I do know is, that you, Madame la Duchesse,
will be conducted to the scaffold, you and many other ladies with you,
in the cart of the executioner, and with your hands tied behind your
backs.' 'All! I hope that in that case I shall at least have a carriage
hung in black.' 'No, Madame; higher ladies than yourself will go, like
you, in the common car, with their hands tied behind them.' 'Higher
ladies! what! the princesses of the blood?' 'Yea, and still more exalted
personages!' replied Cazotte.


The Fate of Royalty.

"Here a sensible emotion pervaded the whole company, and the countenance
of the host was dark and lowering--they began to feel that the joke was
becoming too serious. Madame de Grammont, in order to dissipate the
cloud, took no notice of the last reply, and contented herself with
saying in a careless tone: 'You see, he will not leave me even a
confessor!' 'No, madame!' replied Cazotte, 'you will not have
one--neither you, nor any one besides. The last victim to whom this
favor will be afforded will be--' Here he stopped for a moment. 'Well,
who then will be the happy mortal to whom this prerogative will be
given?' Cazotte replied: 'It is the only one which he will have then
retained--and that will be the King of France!' This last startling
prediction caused the company to disband in something like terror and
dismay, for the mere mention of such things was akin to treason."


The Fulfillment of the Prophecy.

To appreciate the startling nature of the Cazotte prophecy at the time
when it was made, one needs but to be even slightly acquainted with the
position and characteristics of the persons whose destinies were thus
foretold. The amazing sequel to this wonderful prophecy is told by
history--within six years every detail thereof was verified absolutely.
The facts are known to all students of French history of that period,
and may be verified by reference to the pages of any comprehensive
history of those times.


Other Historical Instances.

To mention but a few other celebrated instances of historic prophecy:
George Fox, the pioneer Quaker Friend, had the clairvoyant faculty well
developed, and numerous instances of its manifestation by him are
recorded. For instance, he foretold the death of Cromwell, when he met
him riding at Hampton Court; he said that he felt "a waft of death"
around and about Cromwell--and Cromwell died shortly afterward. Fox also
publicly foretold the dissolution of the Rump Parliament of England; the
restoration of Charles II; and the Great Fire of London. These
prophecies are all matters of history. For that matter, history contains
many instances of this kind, as, for instance, the prophecy of Caesar's
death, and its further prevision by his wife. The Bible prophecies and
predictions, major and minor, give us semi-historical instances.


The Eternal Verities.

As a writer has said concerning this phase of clairvoyant phenomena:
"This phase of clairvoyance is very fascinating to the student and the
investigator, and is one in which the highest psychic powers are called
into play. There is a reflection here of something even higher than the
psychic plane--there is a glimpse of regions infinitely higher and
greater. The student here begins to realize at least something of the
existence of that universal Consciousness 'in which we live, and move,
and have our being'; and of the existence of the reality of the Eternal
Now, in which past, present, and future are blended as one fact of
infinite consciousness. He sees here the signboard pointing to the
eternal verities!"



PART VI

MEDIUMSHIP


Among the higher categories of Nature's Finer Forces is included that
which is popularly known as "mediumship." Although this term has
suffered more or less by reason of its misappropriation by certain
charlatans and the unprincipled exploiters of sincere investigators of
the phenomena of the higher planes of existence, and also by reason of a
certain prejudice against the term arising from misrepresentation and
general misunderstanding, the term still remains a perfectly legitimate
one and one clearly indicating the nature of the general class of
phenomena sought to be embraced within its limits. Therefore there is no
valid reason for its rejection in our consideration of the subject of
Nature's Finer Forces in this book; and, accordingly, it is used here in
a general way, although the more scientific term "higher plane
communication," or similar terms, are employed herein in some cases.


What Is Mediumship?

Let us see just what is meant by the term "mediumship." The term
"medium" is defined as: "That which lies in the middle, or between other
things: hence, that through which anything is conveyed from one thing
to another." In a special sense, a "medium" is "a person serving as the
channel of communication between decarnate entities and human being
still in the flesh," in "spiritualistic phenomena." The suffix "ship,"
of course, denotes state or office; and in the case of "mediumship" it
indicates that the designated person possesses the state or office of a
"medium," the latter term being used in the special meaning above
defined.

Of course, the term "mediumship," as above defined, lacks a clear
meaning unless the term "spiritualistic," or "spiritualism" be defined.
The term "spiritualism" (or as many of the best authorities prefer to
state it, "spiritism") is applied to "a system of communication with the
unseen world, or with the inhabitants thereof, the latter being usually
known as 'spirits,' through persons called 'mediums,' which has attained
popular favor in Europe and America since about 1850." Or, as another
authority states it, "Spiritualism is a term employed to indicate the
belief that departed spirits hold intercourse with mortals by means of
psychical phenomena, commonly through a person of special susceptibility
called a 'medium.'"


Ancient Mediumship.

It is, of course, unnecessary to state in detail the fact that
communication with decarnate entities has been known and practiced by
the human race from the earliest days of recorded history, and
probably long before that time, and is far from being a modern
discovery. Moreover, such communication has been known and practiced
by races of human beings other than those inhabiting Europe and
America--particularly in the oriental countries. In the oriental lands
such communication has been well established for many thousand years,
and the most ancient records give evidences of it. The Hebrew
Scriptures contain many instances of such communication, showing that
the same was an accepted fact of the life of the race at the time and
in the places at which these records were written.


Mediumship and Religious Belief.

The careful student will of course notice that this communication with
the higher planes of life and being--this so-called "mediumship"--does
not depend upon any particular form of religious belief, or teaching,
concerning the nature of the state or place of abode of the departed
spirits of men; but, on the contrary, is common to all form of religion
and to all phases of belief in the survival of the human soul.
Therefore, a scientific consideration of the general subject does not
necessitate the acceptance of any one particular phase of religious
belief, or of any particular system of teaching concerning the nature or
state of "life after death." All that is required of the person
accepting the general fact of "higher plane communication" may be stated
as follows: (1) Acceptance of the fact that the human soul persists
after the death of the body, and independent of and removed from the
dead body; (2) acceptance of the fact that the decarnate souls of human
beings may, and do, establish communication with human beings still
dwelling upon the earth-plane of existence.

We may state here that the term "decarnate" means "away from the
physical body," or "out of the flesh;" the term being the opposite of
"incarnate," meaning "clothed with flesh, or embodied in flesh." We may
also state here that the teachings of most philosophies of the life
after death hold that the decarnate human soul is not entirely devoid of
a body, but rather occupies a body composed of some ethereal substance;
this ethereal body being called the "astral body," or the "spiritual
body."


The Ideals of Modern Spiritualism.

A writer well expresses the ideals of modern western spiritualism as
follows: "Through the gateway of mediumship for upwards of fifty years
the world has been catching glimpses of the glory of the land immortal,
and visitants from that 'bourne' from whence it has been erroneously
said that 'no traveler returns' have made their presence known beyond
all doubt or denial, thus proving the continued conscious existence of
human beings and the sequential chapter of the life hereafter. Though
the messages from the unseen have at times been imperfect and
fragmentary, still they have been MESSAGES. If but telegraphic
dispatches, so to speak, instead of voluminous letters; or like
telephonic snatches of conversation rather than face-to-face outpourings
of thought and feeling, still they have been greetings and comforting
assurances of undying affection from the people living in the land
'beyond the veil.' Although many a sorrowing soul has longed for further
revelation, and regretted the inability of the spirits to comply with
the requests for fuller information, still the gates have been ajar, and
sometimes it has truly seemed as though they had been flung wide
open--so clear and consoling were the messages from the loved ones on
the other side of death's valley of shadow. The manifestations of the
presence of spirits and the evidences of their identity, which have been
accumulating during all these years, have solved the 'great secret,' and
we know that death is not a CUL-DE-SAC, but a thoroughfare. The dread of
death disappeared altogether with the mists of ignorance, as, through
the gateway of mediumship, the shining presence of ministering spirits,
'our very own dear departed,' illumined the pathway which we must all
tread to our great promotion.


Immortality Demonstrated Through Mediumship.

"'Immortality demonstrated through mediumship' should be inscribed upon
the banner of spiritualism, for the fact of life beyond the incident of
death has been proved beyond all peradventure to millions of intelligent
and enlightened people since the new spiritual era was inaugurated. To
mediums--the modern mediators--therefore belong the office and honor of
rolling back the stone from the tomb and establishing faith upon the
firm basis of knowledge (scientifically ascertained and proven) of the
continued intelligent existence in the spiritual realms of those who
went forth through the death change into light and liberty 'over there.'
Mediums, as intermediaries, have enabled spirit people to comfort the
sad and encourage the weak; to relieve the doubter and console the
bereaved; to confirm the old-world traditions regarding bygone spirit
intervention and revelation, and supplement our hopes and intuitions
with proof palpable. Present day experiences of inspiration and spirit
manifestation make credible and acceptable many things in ancient
records which must otherwise have been discarded as superstitious and
false. Spiritualism redeems the so-called 'supernatural' and
'miraculous' occurrences of the Bible, by explaining them and proving
the naturalness. The capability claimed for old-time seers and prophets
to see angels and hear voices is now known to be a natural faculty,
which, in certain people, is perfectly normal while it can be induced in
others by the influence of operators in or out of the body. IT CAN ALSO
BE CULTIVATED TO SOME DEGREE BY MOST PEOPLE WHO CARE TO STUDY THE
NECESSARY CONDITIONS FOR ITS DEVELOPMENT AND EXERCISE. The famine, 'not
of bread, nor of water, but of hearing words from the Lord,' and the
loss of 'open vision' of the spirit, which afflicted Christendom for so
many years (because of the blind intolerance of zealots who, in their
adherence to the 'letter,' crushed out the sensitives through whom the
'spirit' might have been revealed), that famine is rapidly passing away,
and we are being fed with the living bread of spiritual inspiration, and
are growing strong enough to welcome the messengers who come to us
through the gateway of mediumship from their after-death home.


The Truth of Personal Survival.

"When once there is established the conviction of the truth of personal
survival of our loved ones, and the actual and satisfactory
demonstrations thereof through mediumship (and we know of no means
whereby such evidences can be obtained save through mediumship), we are
thrilled and delighted; and when this conviction is borne upon us and
driven home by the evidences, and the truth of spirit ministry has been
realized, nothing can destroy it. The spiritualist stands upon firm
ground--the impregnable rock of ascertained fact. He knows that
intercourse between the two worlds is real, continuous; therefore he is
proof against all speculations, denunciations, and adverse theories.
Dogmatic condemnations, 'bogey' cries, charges of fraud against mediums,
fail to move or frighten him. He can 'speak what he knows and testify to
what he has seen;' his positive and affirmative experience and testimony
outweigh all the opposition of 'doubting Thomases' who do not know.


The Gateway of Mediumship.

"Through the gateway of mediumship the spirits make themselves known in
a variety of ways. There are many phases of mediumistic phenomena, and
the student will find that he must be patient, painstaking, and
persevering if he would make sure of his facts. Careful investigation,
possibly prolonged research, under many difficulties and with many
discouragements, will be required, but 'success is certain if energy
fail not,' and the results will adequately recompense him for all
sacrifice and struggle! For in the light of the demonstrated fact of
continued existence after death, it is clear that man is even now 'a
spirit served by organs'--that consequently the basis of all religious
experience and affirmation is the spiritual consciousness of mankind.
There could be no revelation to man of spiritual truth or moral duty if
he were not a spirit possessing the capabilities of receiving and
comprehending, of interpreting and applying, the revelations and
inspirations which appeal to and quicken the inner (and higher) self."


The Mediumistic Character.

The following quotations from eminent modern spiritualists will further
serve to illustrate the accepted general principles of "spirit
communication" on the part of western spiritualism. E. W. Wallis says:
"Spiritualism deals with a higher range and a wider field of
supersensuous phenomena than mesmerism, hypnotism, telepathic
psychometry, clairvoyance, etc., because the natural susceptibility of
man in these directions is increased and intensified, and exercised upon
a superior plane, when it is utilized by intelligent spirit operators.
It is not true that sensitiveness is confined to those who are diseased,
weak of will, neurotic, or hysterical. Those who are susceptible to
psychic influence may be impulsive, warm-hearted, spontaneous, sociable,
and not by any means, or of necessity, weak-minded or vicious." Dr. Dean
Clake says: "The word mediumship, as understood and used by
spiritualists, technically speaking, means a susceptibility to the
influence, and more or less control, of decarnated spirits.
Physiologically, it means a peculiar nervous susceptibility to what may
be termed the 'psychic force,' which spirits use to move the mind or
body or both, of their mortal instrument. Psychologically, it signifies
a passive or negative state of mind and body which renders a person
subject to the positive will-power of spirits who influence him or her."
The spirit control who employed the hand of Stainton Moses, M.A., to
write his thoughts, said: "The mediumistic peculiarity is one of spirit
solely, and not of body, seeing that it occurs in all varieties of
physical frames, in the male and in the female; in the magnetic and in
the electric; in the stout and robust as well as in the puny and thin of
body; in the old and in the young; in all conditions and under all
circumstances. This alone would lead you to see that it is not a
physical matter; and that conclusion is strengthened for you by the fact
that the gift is perpetuated even after death of the earth body. Those
who on your earth have been mediums retain the gift and use it with us.
They are the most frequent visitors to your world; they communicate most
readily; and it is through them that spirits who have not the gift are
enabled to communicate with your earth."


Mediumistic Sensitivity.

Emma Hardinge Britten said: "Whatever that force may be which
constitutes the difference between a 'medium' and a non-medium, it is
certainly of a mental and magnetic character--that is, a combination of
the subtle elements of mind and magnetism, and therefore of a
psychological and not of a purely physical character. Whilst the
spiritualists of this generation have had no one to teach them either
what spiritual gifts are, or how to use, or how to abuse them,
experience has shown that the conditions under which spiritual phenomena
are produced through mediums are not only helped or hindered by their
mental states, but also by the will, magnetism, and mental states of
those who surround them." E. W. Wallis says: "The same laws govern the
relations between the sensitive and the spirit operator as between the
hypnotist and his subject. Therefore, mediumship is not necessarily
spiritual; it may be of all kinds; there may be psychical relationship
of a high grade and of a low one. There may be messages from beyond that
prove the identity of spirits, and give evidence of the continuity of
life, of the survival of mind, and yet they may not minister to
spiritual growth, nor awaken any exalted desire to be of service to God
and man. There may be psychical sympathy and not spiritual fellowship;
there may be spirit intercourse and not that sweet spiritual communion
which should be the goal of all who seek for evidences of life beyond
the valley of death. It is no longer possible to regard mediumship as a
supernatural endowment. It is, as regards the psychic susceptibility
upon which it depends, the common property of the race, and is therefore
as natural as are the 'gifts' of song or oratory, or the ability to
paint or construct. But as certain gifts and graces are more developed
in some individuals than in others, in like manner the sensitiveness
which is called mediumship is more highly developed (or is capable of
such development) in certain peculiarly constituted persons who may be
regarded as supernormally gifted, yet as naturally so as are geniuses in
other directions."


The Higher Vibratory Forces.

The student who has carefully read what we have said in the earlier
portions of the present book regarding the subject of Nature's Finer
Forces, and those concerned with "vibrations," and "planes of being,"
will be able to harmonize the apparently somewhat conflicting opinions
of those authorities above quoted concerning the nature of mediumship
and spirit communication. In the first place, the student will remember
that there exist planes of being higher and other than our own
earth-plane, and that the rate of normal vibration on such planes is
much higher than are those upon our own earth-plane. In the second
place, he will remember that beings dwelling and manifesting on these
higher planes are able to communicate only by means of their higher
vibratory rate of manifestation. And, in the third place, he will
remember that a person dwelling on the earth-plane will not ordinarily
register and interpret these higher vibrations of communication; and
that it is necessary for such a person to have originally, or else have
developed, the capacity to raise his or her own vibrations to the key
necessary to "catch" these higher vibrations. In short, we have here
once more another instance of that "attunement" between sender and
receiver the most common instance of which is the wireless telegraph.


Psychic Attunement.

The entity, or spirit, dwelling on one of the many higher planes of
being who wishes to communicate with persons on earth through a medium,
must first select some person capable of raising his or her own
vibratory rate of consciousness to become "in tune" with that of the
spirit himself. Then he must learn to project his own mental vibrations
with sufficient intensity and force to be "caught" by the sensitive
perceptive organism of the medium. These things are beyond the
understanding and accomplishment of many decarnate spirits, and unless
they are taught by some one on their own plane of existence they are
likely to fail in their attempts to communicate through a medium on the
earth-plane. But at the present time, in view of the great interest
being manifested "over there" in the communication with the earth-plane,
an earnest, persevering spirit will usually have comparatively little
difficulty in finding a proper instructor, and in acquiring the art of
"earth-plane communication," as it is called on the spirit plane.


The Development of Mediumship.

As regards the acquirement of mediumship qualities, information and
scientific instruction is much needed, particularly at the present time.
In this book we shall endeavor to throw much light upon this particular
matter, and to give such instruction and information in a plain,
practical form. We may begin by reminding the candidate for mediumship
that the methods of development of mediumship are entirely different
from those designed to develop ordinary psychic powers. In the case of
development for ordinary psychic power, the person must acquire the
power of concentration in the direction of sensing in his inner
consciousness the impressions coming to him from the outside world, such
impressions not being consciously directed to him. He must be able to so
concentrate that he will be keenly sensitive to these impressions, and
to interpret them intelligently. On the contrary, the person wishing to
develop the power of mediumship must learn to develop the power of
negative receptivity to the vibrations coming from the spirit planes. As
has well been said, he is the acted upon, and not the actor. While he
requires concentration, patience, and perseverance in developing the
power to raise himself to the proper vibratory key, when the actual work
of communication begins he must passively allow himself to speak and
act, more or less unconsciously, under the guidance, direction, and
control of the communicating spirit.


Unconscious Mediumship.

The student will do well, however, to remember that as a popular writer
has said: "It must not, however, be supposed that spirit influence is
limited to, and exerted solely upon, those who are known to be mediums;
or that the spirits do not assist those who use their own psychic
faculties. It is probable that all people who are psychically sensitive
and open to impressions are indebted to spirit helpers, whether they are
conscious of the fact or not. There is undoubtedly a greater degree of
influx from the spirit side than even spiritualists are aware. Many
persons are indebted to spirit friends for spontaneous impulses, which,
while those persons act upon them and reap the consequences, they can
neither explain nor trace to their source. Spirits frequently associate
with and serve their earth friends, although the recipients of their
benefactions are unaware of the fact. There would be very much more of
this kind of guidance from the unseen, if, instead of being frightened,
or repellant in their mental attitude toward the spirits, the great bulk
of people were prepared to accept such assistance from the other side as
perfectly natural and to be expected."


Mediumship and Individuality.

The student will find it desirable to acquaint himself with the best
opinions concerning the possible or probable effects of the practice of
mediumistic powers upon the medium himself. There is evidenced a
disposition in certain quarters to hold to the idea that mediumship, or
control by spirits, is more or less injurious, mentally or physically or
both, to the medium. It is also frequently asserted that the medium
tends to lose his individuality and personal strength of character.
Again, there are some who would teach that the medium should be of a low
order of intelligence, and should beware of exercising his intellect,
the idea seeming to be that under these conditions the mental path will
be freer and clearer for the spirit control. All of the aforesaid
notions are erroneous, as will appear as we progress in the statements
in this book concerning true and efficient mediumship.


Co-operation of Medium and Spirits.

The medium who observes certain simple and plain rules and habits of
conduct will not suffer any loss of strength of character or
individuality from his exercise of his mediumistic power; on the
contrary, an intelligent exercise of the power of mediumship often tends
to develop the intellectual power of the medium. As to the idea that the
medium must be ignorant, we have but to call your attention to the fact
that many of the most efficient mediums are intelligent, and even
brilliant individuals. As a writer has said: "There may be some mediums
who are ignoramuses, but it is doubtful if there will be any great
degree of intelligence or great spiritual illumination presented through
their agency. It is possible that some mediums act foolishly when in
their normal state, for the purpose of accentuating the difference
between their ordinary and supernormal conditions of mental activity;
but there is a more rational, intelligent, and, indeed, a more spiritual
conception of the relations which should exist between mediums and their
spirit guides, which is rapidly finding favor with thoughtful mediums
and spiritualists alike. The proper method of communing with the spirits
of the unseen realm is conducive to good, and not evil, to the medium.
The co-operative association of medium and spirit on the plane of
thought and purpose, emotion and motive, ethics and inspiration, results
in the education and elevation of the medium."


Mediumship Not Dangerous.

The following additional quotations from spiritualistic writers on this
point, serve to throw important light on this subject. J. J. Morse says:
"Andrew Jackson Davis, Hudson Tuttle, and other writers, if I correctly
understand them, claim that mediumship is a constitutional condition,
and depends upon nervous adaptation, i.e., 'sensitiveness' and the
quickening of the subjective (psychical) faculties; and, personally, my
own firm conviction is that there is nothing dangerous in mediumship.
The mere dabbling in mediumship, as either the means of a new sensation,
or for the gratification of personal vanity, is to be thoroughly
deprecated, as a perversion of some of the most wonderful possibilities
of our natures; while the prosecution of mediumship, or anything else,
to the detriment of mind, nerves, or health, in any direction, is a sin
against oneself, and will inevitably call down the resultant penalties
of physical and mental deterioration. I have many times advised
inquirers who wished to know how to develop mediumship, unless they
desired to do so for serious use, and within proper limits, not to seek
its development at all. And in cases where I could see it would prove
personally detrimental, I have strongly advised the inquirer to let the
matter entirely alone."

Wallis says: "Very much depends upon the objects entertained by the
medium and the sitters, as also upon the character and intentions of the
spirit who seeks to manifest his presence; but, on general lines, where
people of average intelligence and rectitude seek communion with those
they have known and esteemed, or loved, the results are almost
invariably beneficial. There is every reason why this should be so if
the common-sense precautions are observed of keeping a level head,
exercising patience, exhibiting unselfishness and sincerity, and
desiring good spiritual counsel and fellowship."

A. Morton says: "Elevated spirits do not require mediums to surrender
their reason; on the contrary, they advise that every new thought should
be tested in the crucible of reason, and that it be rejected if not in
accordance therewith; but the control of domineering spirits, claiming
the name of celebrities, who present unreasonable theories, and in a
dictatorial 'thus saith the spirit' manner, demanding unquestioning
compliance with their commands, must be rejected by all mediums as
debasing and inconsistent with self respect. Any associations or
concessions which have a tendency to lower the spiritual standard must
be carefully avoided, for there is no growth in any relations which can
only be maintained by the sacrifice of self-respect and self-justice."


Rational Mediumship.

Wallis says: "The rational course for mediums and inquirers to follow is
assuredly that of avoiding the extremes alike of credulity and sceptical
incredulity, by letting the spirits do their best and then collating the
facts observed and drawing conclusions. Care, patience, and perseverance
will save both mediums and inquirers from many misconceptions and enable
them to avoid the errors of others. Above all, mediums should observe
their own feelings, study their own experiences, try to understand and
co-operate with the spirits, but never yield servile or slavish service,
nor permit themselves to be swayed by flattery nor dominated by any
spirit (in the circle or on the spirit side) who claims obedience, poses
as an 'authority,' or refuses to recognize the rights of others. No
medium should remain ignorant, or refrain from giving effect to his (or
her) natural desire for knowledge and self-improvement under the
erroneous idea that he does not need to think, study, or learn, because
he is a medium; and that the spirits will provide and teach through him
all that is required. On the other hand, while thoughtfully observant of
favorable conditions, and intelligent in self-study and culture, the
medium should avoid 'getting up' certain subjects, or thinking along
certain lines with the purpose and expectation that such information
will be employed while under control. Such action, proceeding from a
wrong motive, cannot fail to injure the psychic relations between the
spirit and the medium, and will render the work of control doubly hard,
because such thoughts will have to be cleared away before those of the
spirit can be transferred to, and have free course through, the medium."


The "Home Circle."

Mediums are born or made. That is to say, many persons are born with the
gift of mediumship, while others, lacking this natural power, are able
to develop the power by practice and gradual unfoldment. Some of the
world's best mediums have been developed, while others in the same class
have been born with the gift. At the same time, it must be remembered
that there is a wide range of power existing between different
individual mediums of both of these classes. In the opinion of the
present writer, perhaps the very best way of developing mediumistic
powers is that of actually participating in "circle work." The wonderful
results of earlier spiritualism in America and in Europe were
undoubtedly due to the casual and general practice of holding "home
circles." These home circles were the nursery of some of the world's
greatest mediums. Here the born medium was made aware of his or her
natural powers; and, likewise, here others were enabled to gradually
unfold and develop their latent mediumistic power.


The Cure for Fraudulent Mediumship.

At the present time we have too few mediums, and this fact is
attributable largely to the gradual discontinuance of the home circles.
Present time folks are too fond of having everything worked out and
presented to them, and they flock to the sensational public
demonstrations, some of which are undoubtedly "faked" in order to meet
the public demand for sensational features; and at the same time the
honest, careful, conscientious mediums are often overlooked, and the
home circles almost unknown. Many so-called investigators of
spiritualism are feverishly anxious to "see something," and are
impatient and the comparatively slow order of developments at the home
circle or at the careful mediumistic circles. Many earnest spiritualists
lament the present tendency, and predict that in time there will be an
almost complete dearth of honest, careful mediums, owing to the demand
for "quick action" and the temptation to furnish fraudulent counterfeits
of the genuine phenomena resulting from this feverish public demand.


Warning to Young Mediums.

Wallis says concerning this point: "After a time, as the development
progresses, the medium and his spirit friends may be strong enough to
undertake public work without the assistance and protection of a circle,
in the same manner as did D. Home, Slade, Eglinton, and other noted
public mediums; but they should be in no hurry about doing so, and they
need to be very self-possessed and level-headed to hold their own
against the 'phenomena hunters' on the one side (who sap the very life
of the sensitive), and the know-all, conceited sceptics on the other
side (who freeze up all the psychic conditions), and before whom it is
worse than foolish to cast these pearls of great price.

"The lot of the public 'physical,' 'test,' and 'clairvoyant' medium is
not to be envied or lightly chosen. Such sensitives frequently suffer a
martyrdom that none but sensitives can realize. What with foolish
flatterers; the sitters who are never content, but cry 'give, give,
give;' the injudicious friends, who seeing the exhaustion of the
worn-out mediums, in mistaken sympathy urge them to take stimulants
(instead of securing them rest and change of surroundings), they have a
hard road to travel, and our sincerest sympathy goes out to them all. We
plead for them. We bespeak kindly and human consideration. Too
frequently they are tried and condemned unheard. They are expected to
prove that they are NOT frauds, instead of, as in other cases, being
accepted as reputable people. So much has this been the case that some
mediums of unquestioned power have retired into private life and
business pursuits, where they meet with the respect and recognition
which were denied them while they were public workers in the ranks of
spiritualism.

"Let us not be misunderstood. In saying this we are not apologizing for,
or palliating fraud or wrong doing, but merely asking for fair and
considerate treatment--not hasty, unreasoning condemnation. While it is
true that mediumship has many compensations, and the medium who takes
pleasure in his work has many pleasant experiences, it is also true that
the professional medium is too frequently subjected to treatment which
makes his task more difficult and thankless than it need be. The kindly
and appreciative treatment which he receives from some sitters is a
welcome stimulus, and affords good conditions for the spirits, who are
thus enabled to operate to the best advantage."



PART VII

MEDIUMISTIC CONDITIONS


Mediumistic phenomena, i.e., the phenomena by and through which spirits
manifest their presence and demonstrate their power, may be broadly
classified under two heads, as follows, (1) physical phenomena, and (2)
mental phenomena.


Physical Phenomena.

PHYSICAL PHENOMENA cover a wide range of mediumistic manifestations,
among which are movements of tables, the production of "raps," the
manifestation of spirit lights, freedom from the effects of fire, the
passage of matter through matter, direct writing upon paper or upon
slates, direct voices, levitation of the medium, spirit photographs, and
the production of the materialized form of the spirit. While in rare
cases the spirits may manifest these forms of physical phenomena without
the assistance of the medium and the circle, nevertheless as a rule such
phenomena are produced by the spirits only through the assistance of a
medium, and usually only when there is gathered together a circle.


"Psychic Force."

Various explanations of the power employed by the spirits, assisted by
the medium and by the circle, have been offered by the scientific
investigators of the subject. The most generally accepted theory of the
western scientists is that the spirits employ what is called the
"psychic force" of the medium, often assisted by that drawn from the
circle and focused in the medium. The medium is regarded as a psychic
storage battery which is freely drawn upon by the manifesting spirit.
The degree and character of the manifestations are determined largely by
the peculiar quality of the psychic force, the capabilities of the
medium, the knowledge and powers of the spirits, and the influence of
the sitters.


Human Magnetism.

Dr. Dean Clarke says: "Human magnetism, or nerve aura, is probably the
most sublimated form of ethereal matter, hence nearest in refinement to
spirit substance, and therefore spirits use it as the vehicle of their
vibrating forces. Those persons who have an excess of magnetism, of the
proper quality to unite with both the psychic force of spirits and the
forces inherent in natural objects, and thus form an electro-magnetic
connection of spirits with the objects they wish to act upon, are the
persons chosen by the spirits for physical mediums. The mind and brain
of the medium are not often nor necessarily controlled, and only his
magnetism and psychic forces are used, through which the spirits
transmit the vibrations of their own power to mechanically produce
concussions, or movements of material objects."


"Zoether."

Hudson Tuttle (writing under control) gives the following statement of a
spirit concerning the manner in which physical phenomena are produced:
"Zoether (psychic force) emanating from the medium charges the object to
be moved, and a band of spirits directs a current of their own zoethic
emanation in the direction they desire the article to move, and it
passes along the current thus produced. The charging of the object by
the medium is necessary in order that it may be in a state of vibration
harmonious to the spirit current. If this current be directed against
the table or other charged body, raps or concussions are produced, as a
positive and negative relation exists between the spirits and the
medium's zoether. One spirit alone cannot produce physical
manifestations. If one purports to communicate, assistance will be
rendered by many others, who combine their influence."


"Prana."

The orientals account for physical mediumistic phenomena in a similar
way, though their terms are different. Instead of speaking of zoether,
or psychic force, they always employ the term "prana." In the oriental
philosophies "prana" is explained as a subtle form of energy permeating
the universe, but manifesting in a special form in the organism of the
human being. This subtle force, or prana, is held to be capable of being
transmitted from one organism to another, and is held to be the
energizing power by means of which many forms of occult or magic
phenomena are produced. Prana is very much akin to the "human magnetism"
of the western occultists, and the properties attributed to the latter
are really those which the orientals for centuries past have held to be
among the essential properties of prana; so, at the last, there is found
to be a practical agreement here between the oriental and the western
schools of occultism, respectively, in spite of their differing
terminology.


Mental Phenomena.

MENTAL PHENOMENA cover another wide range of mediumistic phenomena,
among which may be mentioned the following, viz., involuntary or
automatic writing and drawing, writing by means of the planchette or
"ouija" board or similar mechanical aid to writing, clairvoyant
perception of spirits, clairaudient hearing of spirit voices, prophetic
utterances of spirits, impersonating and inspirational control of the
medium. Mediums are frequently so thoroughly "under the influence or
control," especially in private circle seances, that they seem to have
been transformed into another personality. Sometimes the medium through
which the spirit is manifesting will have his facial appearance changed
so completely that persons present will recognize in the changed
appearance the looks of the spirit as known when it was in earth life.


The Value of Phenomena.

The chief value of physical mediumistic manifestations is not, as
generally supposed, that of affording entertainment or food for thought
for those witnessing them, but rather that of affording proof of the
possibility of spirit communication, particularly when spirit identity
is established through the manifestation of the phenomena. A writer
says of this class of phenomena: "A good psychographic medium will
usually obtain writing between closed slates, which may be brought by
the investigator, who can insist upon their not leaving his sight, and
not even leaving his hand. We have obtained writing on paper that we had
previously marked, which was then covered by our own hand, and a
friend's and was untouched by the medium. On another occasion, a slate
which we had personally cleaned was laid on the floor (fully six feet
from the medium) with a small piece of pencil under it (in broad
daylight), and on taking it up shortly afterwards there was found
written on the under side a long message of a private nature from a
deceased friend, of whom we were not thinking. Such phenomena as these
are still good and impressive, they cannot be counterfeited under like
conditions, and even when no proof of identity is given in connection
with the writings, they point so distinctly to the action of a discrete,
disembodied intelligence as to compel the recognition of their spiritual
origin. The evidential utility of physical phenomena lies in their being
inimitable by fraud. Imitations can of course be made which might
satisfy the credible and the gullible, but the conditions for testing
the phenomena we have specially referred to are so simple that no
rational investigator need be deceived; first, to be sure that the
slate, paper, or panel to be used is perfectly blank; second, that it
does not leave the hand of the inquirer, or if it does, that it is
marked in such a way that there can be no doubt of its identification
when it is returned to him; and thirdly (with paintings), to observe if
the paint be wet, and note the time occupied in their production."


Trance Condition Not Essential.

Many persons are under the impression that it is necessary for a medium
to go into the trance condition in order to manifest physical
mediumistic phenomena, but such is not the case. While many mediums do
lapse into the trance conditions at such time, it is equally true that
many others do not do so. Some of the very best mediums produce some of
the most striking manifestations while in a perfectly normal, waking
condition. A writer says of a well-known medium: "She constantly
receives evidences of the presence of her spirit friends while she is
perfectly normal. We have heard rappings and witnessed movements of
physical objects in her presence, while holding friendly conversation
with her, when we have been in a good light. Frequently, at meal times,
the spirits announce their presence by raps, and respond to the
salutations and questions of their medium and other members of the
family."

Professor Loveland says: "Many of the best mediums in the world were
never entranced in the sense of being in an unconscious sleep. And it is
doubted whether that condition is desirable. The Fox girls, and most, if
not all of the original rapping mediums, were never in the deep sleep
trance. It is not necessary for any of the physical manifestations, and
that includes a very large percentage of all the spirit phenomena. The
rappings, tippings, movings, slate writings, automatic writings,
paintings, telegraphing, voices, materializing, etc., can all occur
without the sleep trance, the reason for which is very apparent, as in
the production of such phenomena the spirits simply use the surplus
radiated nerve-force of the medium."


Scientific Reports on Phenomena.

Sir William Crookes, in speaking of D. D. Home and Euspasia Paladino,
said: "Most, if not all, of the occurrences with Euspasia seem to have
taken place when she was in a trance, and the more complete the trance
the more striking the phenomena. This was not always so with Home.
Certainly the two most striking things I ever saw with him, the fire
test and the visible forms, were to be observed while he was entranced,
but it was not always easy to tell when he was in that state, for he
spoke and moved about almost as if he were in his normal condition; the
chief differences being that his actions were more deliberate, and his
manner and expressions more solemn, and he always spoke of himself in
the third person, as 'Dan.' When he was not in a trance we frequently
had movements of objects in different parts of the room, with visible
hands carrying flowers about and playing the accordion. On one occasion
I was asked by Home to look at the accordion as it was playing in the
semi-darkness beneath the table. I saw a delicate looking female hand
holding it by the handle, and the keys at the lower end rising and
falling as if fingers were playing on them, although I could not see
them. So lifelike was the hand that at first I said it was my
sister-in-law's, but was assured by all present that both her hands were
on the table, a fact which I then verified for myself."


Phenomena Without Darkness.

"Home always refused to sit in the dark. He said that, with firmness and
perseverance, the phenomena could be got just as well in the light, and
even if some of the things were not so strong, the evidence of one's
eyesight was worth making same sacrifices for. In almost all the seances
I had with Home there was plenty of light to see all that occurred, and
not only to enable me to write down notes of what was taking place, but
to read my notes without difficulty. Home was very anxious to let
everyone present be satisfied that he was not doing any of the things
himself--too anxious, I sometimes thought, for frequently he would
interfere with the progress and development of what was going on by
insisting that some sceptic or other should come around and take hold of
his hands and feet to be sure he was not doing anything himself. At
times, he would push his chair back and move right away from the table
when things were moving on it, and ask those furthest from him to come
round and satisfy themselves that he had nothing to do with the
movements. I used frequently to beg him to be quiet, knowing that, if he
would not move about in his eagerness to convince us of his genuineness,
the strength of the phenomena would probably increase to such a degree
that no further evidence would be needed that their production was
beyond the powers of the medium.


Test Conditions.

"During the whole of my knowledge of D. D. Home, extending for several
years, I never once saw the slightest occurrence that would make me
suspicious that he was attempting to play tricks. He was scrupulously
sensitive on this point, and never felt hurt at anyone taking
precautions against deception. He sometimes, in the early days of our
acquaintance, used to say to me before a seance, 'Now, William, I want
you to act as if I were a recognized conjurer, and was going to cheat
you and play all the tricks I could. Take every precaution you can
devise against me, and move about and look under the table or where else
you like. Don't consider my feelings. I shall not be offended. I know
that the more carefully I am tested the more convinced will everyone be
that these abnormal occurrences are not of my own doings.' Latterly, I
used jokingly to say to him, 'Let us sit round the fire and have a quiet
chat, and see if our friends are here and will do anything for us. We
won't have any tests or precautions.' On these occasions, when only my
family were present with him, some of the most convincing phenomena took
place."


Is Darkness Necessary?

From the above it is seen that not only is the trance condition not
absolutely necessary for the production of striking mediumistic
phenomena, but that, also, there is no absolute necessity for the
condition of darkness to be maintained as an essential feature of such
phenomena. While many mediums insist upon the condition of darkness at
seances, it is thought by some careful thinkers that this arises from
the fact that such mediums have been accustomed to such conditions from
their earliest days of mediumship, and have grown to believe that the
same are absolutely necessary. It is thought that if such mediums would
begin over again, practicing in full light in the company of a few
sympathetic friends, they would before long grow accustomed to the new
conditions, and would then be able to reproduce all of their most
important phenomena in full light. Using the terms of modern psychology,
it would seem that such mediums are the victims of their own
"auto-suggestion," and fixed beliefs; and, as all students of the
subject well know, the mental states of the medium have a most important
bearing of the quality of the phenomena produced, and form a very
important factor of the conditions governing the success of the seance.


Developing Circles.

The person who is developing mediumship will do well to surround himself
with persons of a certain type of psychical power, and to form circles
of such persons. Such persons are invaluable in constituting a
"developing circle." Such persons need not be mediumistic themselves,
nor are they required to actually do anything. Instead, their service is
that of being present as psychical reservoirs of force upon which the
spirits can draw for manifesting power. The medium, being sensitive to
helpful influences, and the reverse, will recognize such persons by the
congenial and harmonious influence they exercise upon him; and he will
do well to encourage such persons to sit in his developing circles.


Impersonating Mediumship.

What is known as "impersonating mediumship" occurs where the medium is
so completely under the control of the manifesting spirit that he will
exhibit, often in a marvelously accurate manner, the personal
characteristics and mannerisms of the spirit, and which are readily
recognized as such by the spirit's surviving friends in earth-life.
Sometimes the medium will actually re-enact the dying moments of the
controlling spirit. In many cases such impersonations have been so
nearly photographically and phonographically correct that they have
afforded the most convincing proof to investigators, and in other cases
have been a great consolation to relatives of the spirit who have been
thus assured that their loved one was still in actual existence on a
higher plane of being. These results, however, are possible only when a
very close rapport condition has been established between the spirit and
the medium. In cases in which such a close rapport condition is
obtained, and a high degree of harmony developed, the spirit will be
able to positively establish his identity by causing the medium to utter
his exact words, and to give names, dates, and close details of
incidents occurring in his earth life, and often to employ his exact set
phrases and verbal tricks of speech, so as to bring to the consciousness
of the sitters the realization that they are in the actual presence of
the decarnate spirit friend.


The Proper Mental Condition.

The young medium, however, should beware against striving too hard to be
the instrument of the phenomena of spirit impersonation. For a too
intense anxiety, and desire to please sitters, frequently tends to
produce a cloudy mental state in which the ideas in the mind of the
medium blend with the spirit communication, and thus produces a most
unsatisfactory result, and one which is apt to confuse the minds of the
sitters and sometimes actual arouse suspicion that the medium is trying
to practice deception. For this reason the young medium should not seek
the attendance of persons desiring "test seances;" at least, such should
be his course until he has learned not to be carried away with his
desire to please or to satisfy such persons attending his circles. He
should endeavor to cultivate a mental condition of calmness, and a
determination not to influence or to interfere with the spirit
communications in any way whatsoever, but, instead, to allow himself to
become a passive instrument for the communication. The medium should
remember that he is not a dealer in merchandise "warranted to please,"
but is, instead, a medium of communication between the spirit and those
still in earth-life.


Demand Proof of Spirit Identity.

A certain degree of care and caution, and the employment of honest
powers of discrimination, is necessary on the part of the sitters in
cases of spirit impersonation. This not because of any lack of honesty
on the part of the medium, but because of the habit of a mischievous
class of dwellers on the planes of spirit life to falsely impersonate
other spirits as such seances. As all investigators of the subject know
very well, it is not an infrequent thing for such mischievous and
meddlesome spirits to endeavor to pass themselves off as the relative or
friends of those in the circle, or even to falsely impersonate some
great historical personages. In such cases the sitters should insist
upon the spirit positively identifying himself, just as they would in
case of doubt regarding a person speaking to them over the telephone and
claiming to be such-and-such a person. And the proof demanded should be
similar to that which would be sought from the suspected telephone
talker. An honest spirit communicator does not object to such demands,
and is only too ready to do his best to furnish the right kind of proofs
concerning his identity.


The "Trance Condition."

The psychic condition frequently attending the demonstration of
mediumship powers is usually spoken of as a "trance," but this term is
quite misleading, for it carries with it the suggestion of an entire
loss of consciousness and of a condition of more or less deep sleep. But
the mediumistic trance is seldom a deep sleep condition. Instead, it is
the condition similar to that of a profound "day dream," in which the
person is fully awake but in which the consciousness has been almost
entirely taken off the sights and sounds of the outside world. As a
writer has well said: "What is called 'trance mediumship' is seldom of
the nature of the deep sleep of entire unconsciousness. It is more
frequently the suspension of the ordinary consciousness of external
surroundings, a temporary oblivion on the outer plane--a semi-conscious
state, in fact--in which the subject does not retain the volitional
ability to employ his thinking powers, the latter having been 'switched
off,' so to speak, and the subject responds to the will of the spirit
control."


Spirit Inspiration.

Wallis says, concerning the nature of a certain phase of spirit control:
"In the case of speaking mediumship, where general and philosophical
ideas are to be transmitted, the control is of a different order from
that exercised for test manifestations. It is more frequently of the
nature of 'suggestion.' The spirit suggestionist suggests to the medium
a certain train of ideas, and then stimulates the brain and the organs
of expression to do the work of dressing up the thoughts and giving them
utterance. Unless the subject is a scientific or a biographical one, in
which specific terms are required and accurate data are to be imparted,
the relationship between the 'inspired' speaker and the spirit control
partakes more of the character of the engineer who feeds the fire and
directs the movements of his engine, while the machine does the work,
than it does of the actual voicing of the exact words, embodying in a
full and complete fashion the ideas the spirit wishes to have expressed.


Spirit Suggestion.

"At first the operator may succeed by very imperfectly stimulating the
brain of the sensitive and causing the cerebration and expression of his
thoughts. The utterances may bear but a slight resemblance to what the
spirit intended to express. The vocabulary is that of the medium, and
the form in which the speech is cast of necessity partakes of the mold
familiar to the sensitive--but, by continued close association and
frequent control of the medium, the operator gains experience which
enables him to exert a more decided influence; and the sensitive,
becoming attuned, responds to and expresses the thoughts of the spirit
with greater clearness and precision. Just as those who dwell together
unconsciously approach nearer to each other and acquire a similarity in
their mode of thought and of expressing their ideas (the more dominant
personality impressing itself upon the less positive), so the medium
imperceptibly, and very often unconsciously, acquires facility and
proficiency in thought and elocutionary expression as the result of the
co-operation between himself and his spirit guide."


Psychic Attunement.

Those who have read the above carefully stated opinion, will begin to
see the reason why certain mediums who have attained the greatest
proficiency in certain forms of mediumship, and who have become what are
known as "reliable mediums," almost always have some particular spirit
guide or guides with whom they have become in almost perfect psychic
harmony and attunement. These harmonious spirits are not only enabled to
express themselves with a high degree of clearness and power through
their favorite medium, but are also enabled to assist in the production
of the best rapport conditions between other spirits wishing to
communicate and the said medium. There is a certain amount of spiritual
and psychic co-operation between spirit and medium which is attained
only by practice and continued association, which results in a psychic
attunement between them. The closer and more harmonious the relationship
existing between a spirit and his medium, the thinner is the veil
separating the two planes upon which they dwell.


Automatic Writing.

In that phase of mediumship known as "automatic or inspirational
writing," there is manifested two distinct forms of spirit control of
the organism of the medium. In cases of pure automatic writing the
spirit controls the arm and hand muscles of the medium, and uses them to
write out the message under the direct and absolute control of the mind
and will of the spirit. Cases have been known in which both hands of the
medium have been so used by the spirit control, each hand writing a
distinct and separate message, and both being performed without any
consciousness of the nature of the message on the part of the medium. In
some cases of automatic writing the medium was engaged in thought about
other subjects, or even in reading or study from a book. This is true
not only in cases of automatic writing in which the hand is directly
employed, but also in those in which some mechanical device such as the
planchette or the ouija board intervenes.


Inspirational Writing.

In inspirational writing, on the other hand, the spirit impresses the
message upon the mind of the medium, either as a whole, or else sentence
by sentence or even word by word--in all of such cases, be it noted, the
medium is aware of the substance of what he is about to write, either
the word, the sentence, or perhaps the entire message. In such cases, of
course, the medium retains control of his writing muscles and their
action, and the spirit control is merely a phase of higher telepathy, as
it were. When the message is impressed upon the mind of the medium word
by word, or sentence by sentence, the style is of course that of the
spirit exerting the control; but where the entire message is impressed
upon the mind of the medium, the style is usually a blending of that of
the spirit and that of the medium, for the medium is not likely to
remember the literal message as given him, but merely is conscious of
the general purport and meaning thereof, together with a few phrases or
expressions formed by the spirit mind. In such cases, of course, the
personality of the medium enters largely into the message, while in the
case of pure automatic writing the personality of the medium plays no
part whatsoever, and the personality of the spirit is present in its
entirety. This important distinction should be noted and remembered.


Gradual Development of Powers.

Most mediums develop their powers of mediumship gradually, and pass
through a number of stages in their development of power. At first
they may obtain only raps, or possibly the tilting or movement of
tables. Then, very likely, they are moved to write, either
automatically or else inspirationally. Later they experience the
impulse to allow the spirit control to speak through their vocal
organism, but it is seldom that the spirit is able to do this at first
trial, as the medium is not as yet sufficiently sensitized or attuned
to the spirit, and, instead, they can but gurgle, gasp, and make
inarticulate sounds, or else shout, laugh, cry, or sing, and possibly
jabber some strange jargon or unknown tongue, or else simply utter a
series of sounds lacking in definite meaning. Later, the inarticulate
sound is succeeded by definite sentences--perhaps a message, or a
short address. Sometimes the spirit control will endeavor to relate
some of his earth-life experiences, or perhaps even to give an
impersonation manifestation. Often several different spirits strive to
manifest through the developing medium, taking turns as manifestation,
holding the control for only a few minutes and then giving place to
his successor.


Spirit Guides.

As the development proceeds, it will be found that one or two particular
spirits will manifest a greater power than the others, and after
establishing a strong degree of harmony and attunement they will assume
the position of "guides" to the medium, and will accordingly begin to
work in his interests on their side of life, and to accept or reject
other spirits who seek to manifest through their medium. At this stage,
the medium is often sufficiently advanced to be used as the channel for
fuller and more complete manifestations, particularly in the direction
of inspirational speaking. Often the medium in this stage of development
is also able to manifest psychic powers which were formerly beyond his
ability, as for instance psychometry, clairvoyance, etc. Then if his
spirit guides be sufficiently advanced and powerful, and the medium be
sufficiently receptive and harmonious to their influences, they will
educate him to such an extent that he will be able, with their
assistance, to become an instrument for the production of still higher
forms of mediumistic phenomena. But the development is almost always
gradual and proceeds by successive and well-defined steps and stages.


No Loss of Individuality.

In concluding this part of our book, we would call your attention to the
following statements made by writers along the lines of spiritualism in
the leading journals of that school of modern thought. The first writer
says: "There is no need for the medium to decline to be influenced or
controlled, by spirit friends for fear of losing his 'individuality,'
any more than he should insist upon asserting his freedom and refuse the
aid of tutors, lest they should infringe upon his sacred
'individuality.' What are called the unconscious phases of mediumship
generally lead up to loving co-operation with the wise and kindly souls
of the higher life in efforts to establish the fellowship of man; to
bring knowledge where ignorance now reigns; to banish the darkness by
the light of that spiritual communion which shall yet be a blessing to
the race; and reliance upon higher powers in or out of the body does not
mean that we sacrifice our own abilities, nor do we thus become exempt
from responsibility. Quite the reverse. It is the arrogance of
individualism against which we protest. In fact, there is no abiding
strength of purpose apart from the dependence every well-ordered mind
should accord to the Infinite Light and Wisdom and the beneficial
services which His wise and loving ministering spirits can render to us
if we are desirous and responsive."


Mediumship Beneficial.

A second writer says: "There is no reason why the reactive consequences
of frequent control by enlightened and earnest spirits, even in the case
of the 'trance' medium, should not prove extremely beneficial to the
sensitive, and this, we believe, has been the case with many of the
speakers in the spiritualistic movement. Where the medium is
inspirational and ready to respond to the thought impulsations of the
control, it stands to reason that the transmitted ideas, and the
stimulation of the thought-faculties caused by the transference and
expression of the spirits' opinions, will not be lost to the medium. 'If
you will take one step we can more easily help you to take a second than
we could compel you to take the first if you were unprepared,' said a
spirit teacher to Mrs. Emma Hardinge Britten, and there need be no loss
of dignity or individuality, no injury to body or mind, but a gain of
strength and spiritual vigor, education of mind and stimulation of moral
purpose, by intelligent co-operation and temporary surrender on the
part of the medium to wise and loving spirit helpers and teachers."


Mediumship and The Bible.

A third writer, Rev. H. E. Haweis, says in connection with the relation
of spiritualism with religion: "People now believe in the Bible because
of spiritualism; they do not believe in spiritualism because of the
Bible. Take up your Bible and you will find that there is not a single
phenomenon which is recorded there which does not occur at seances
today. Whether it be lights, sounds, the shaking of the house, the
coming through closed doors, the mighty rushing winds, levitation,
automatic writing, the speaking in tongues, we are acquainted with all
these phenomena; they occur every day in London as well as in the Acts
of the Apostles. It is incontestable that such things do occur, that in
the main the phenomena of spiritualism are reliable, and happen over and
over again, under test conditions, in the presence of witnesses; and
that similar phenomena are recorded in the Bible, which is written for
our learning. It is not an opinion, not a theory, but a fact. There is
chapter and verse for it, and this is what has rehabilitated the Bible.
The clergy ought to be very grateful to spiritualism for this, for they
could not have done it themselves. They tried, but they failed."



PART VIII

HOW TO DEVELOP MEDIUMSHIP


Anyone is entitled to be considered a "medium" if he or she is
psychically sensitive and capable of receiving and responding to spirit
control or influence. Likewise, anyone is entitled to the designation
who is capable of so generating freely a sufficient quantity of "psychic
force," magnetism, prana, or whatever other name we may choose to apply
to the force which is generated in the human organism and is capable of
being employed by the spirits in order to produce mediumistic phenomena
of the class usually referred to as "physical phenomena." As we have
seen, the spirits themselves are not usually able to manufacture or
generate by themselves this psychic required to produce the said
phenomena, but, on the contrary, must depend upon mediumistic
individuals for such force.


Who Are Mediumistic?

Many persons are more or less naturally sensitive to spirit influence,
and therefore mediumistic. In many cases these persons tend to take on
the psychic conditions of others, both those in earth life and those on
the spirit plane of existence, without realizing the nature of the
influence operating on them. Such persons are frequently more or less
erratic, and are considered as "flighty" by their friends. They need
instruction on the subject of psychic laws and self-control, so that
they may intelligently guard themselves against undesirable influences,
and at the same time cultivate the power of mediumship of the desirable
kind. It has been asserted that "everyone is a medium," and in a way
this is true, for practically every person is more or less sensitive to
spirit influence, and is capable of being developed into an efficient
medium of communication with the spirit world. But it is equally true
that only a certain percentage of persons possess the true spiritual
qualities requisite for the highest phases of true mediumship. That is
to say, but few persons are fitted temperamentally and spiritually for
the higher tasks of mediumship. We think it safe to say, however, that
where a person is filled with a burning desire to become a true medium,
and feels within himself or herself a craving of the soul for
development along these lines, then that person may feel assured that he
or she has within his or her soul the basic qualities required for true
mediumship, and that these may be developed by the proper methods.


The Mediumistic Temperament.

A leading writer on the subject of mediumship has said: "It is a
fundamental proposition that sensitiveness, or the capability of
mediumship, is a faculty common to mankind, differing in degree--as
hearing and sight are common heritages, but keener in some individuals
than in others; or, under certain conditions, it may disappear." What
is called "the mediumistic temperament" is frequently marked
self-consciousness and shrinking from public criticism, and a diffidence
which causes the person to wish to be out of the range of the
observation of strangers and those not sympathetic to them; on the other
hand, however, there are other forms of the "mediumship temperament"
which is marked by a nervous, almost hysterical, self assertiveness and
desire for public notice and attention. Persons of either of these
phases of this temperament, however, have the common quality of being
extremely sensitive to sneers and slights, adverse criticism and
oppositions, while ridicule drives them almost beside themselves.
Likewise they are nearly always found to be enthusiastic and earnest
workers when their interests and sympathies are aroused; as a writer has
said "they are almost invariably emotional, enthusiastic, spontaneous,
and ardent." And, as another writer has said they are usually "generous
and impulsive, hot-headed and independent, close friends with warm
hearts; too sensitive to criticism of an unkind nature, too easily
pleased by praise; without malice, without revengeful thoughts." A
striking feature of this temperament may be summed up in the phrase,
"hungry for sympathy and understanding."


Is Mediumship Desirable?

While it is true that a vast majority of persons possess the mediumistic
power, latent and dormant, and capable of being developed to a greater
or less active power, it is but honest to say that in many cases it is a
grave question whether the person would be justified in undertaking the
hard work, and long time, required to develop himself for the minor
success which would attend his efforts. As a writer has said: "Does the
prospective result justify the labor involved to bring these powers into
efflorescence? My impression is, that in at least three cases out of
four, the time and labor it would take to develop this latent quality to
its greatest efficacy would be far in excess of its value when so
developed." But, as we have already said, the best indication is found
in the "call" to develop his or her latent powers which the true medium
always experiences.


Developing the Natural Power.

A writer on this subject well says: "Just as a drum or tamborine is
incapable of being made to emit a tithe of what can be produced by means
of a piano or a violin, in the way of music, so the differences in
quality and conditions of the physical organisms, and in the degree of
nervous and psychical sensibility of those who desire mediumship, render
it improbable that any but a small proportion will develop such extreme
susceptibility to spirit influence as will repay them for the time and
self-sacrifice involved in the cultivation of their powers. Further, it
should be borne in mind that while wise spirits are ever ready to
respond to the call of the earnest aspirant for spiritual truth, as wise
spirits they are not likely to devote themselves to the preparation of
an instrument that would be inefficient for their purpose. The nervous
system of the medium, whatever his phase may be, has to be trained to
respond to the will and the psychic force of the controlling spirit,
just as much as the muscles of the musician or artist, and 'practice
makes perfect' in the one case as well in the other. Since mediumship
is a strictly natural qualification, depending upon organic fitness and
susceptibility, it is not a supernatural power or a special 'gift,'
neither does it insure the moral purity nor the intellectual ability of
the medium, any more than musical or artistic capabilities are evidences
of the special intelligence or the high moral tones of their
possessors."


Mediumship and Genius.

The spirits controlling the hand of a celebrated writing medium, once
delivered through him the following message regarding the nature and
development of mediumistic powers: "Mediumship is a development of that
which is, in another sort, genius. Genius, the opened and attentive ear
to spirit guidance and inspiration, shades away into mediumship, the
facile instrument of spirit manifestation. In proportion as the medium
becomes open to influence, directly exercised, is he valuable as a means
whereby direct messages are conveyed. And in proportion as the
individual spirit is lost and merged in the great ocean of spirit, is
the result most direct and serviceable. It is when the passive spirit is
content to allow us to use the corporeal instrument, as it does when
itself operates, that we gain satisfactory results. That can only be
when a condition of perfect passivity, as far removed from scepticism as
from credulity, has been secured. This opening of the spiritual being to
spiritual influences is what you call mediumship. The true and valuable
gifts are purely spiritual and must be used for spiritual purposes; not
for gain, or for satisfying curiosity, or for base or unworthy ends."


Spontaneous Mediumship.

What may be called "spontaneous mediumship" is experienced by many
persons not claiming mediumistic powers, and not understanding the
nature of the phenomena manifesting to and through themselves. Such
persons at times are conscious of the presence of spirit friends, and
may even catch glimpses of them either in the form of a mental image
impressed upon their minds by the spirit friends, or else by a more or
less clear partial materialization. Sometimes raps manifest themselves
in their vicinity, and tables and light articles of furniture may
manifest movement at their touch or approach. Such persons, not
understanding the laws of spirit manifestation, are frequently greatly
distressed, or even frightened, by such manifestations; and in not a few
cases they experience considerable annoyance and grief by reason of the
attitude of their friends who are apt to consider them "queer," or
"spooky," and therefore to be avoided. Moreover, in the case of the
physical manifestations such as the movements of tables, furniture,
etc., and the production of raps, these persons are frequently accused
of deliberate fraud in the production of such phenomena, whereas as a
matter of fact they, themselves, are quite in the dark as to the cause
and nature of the phenomena in question. It is obvious that the placing
of the right information in the hands of such persons, and their
instruction in the laws and principles of mediumship would be a blessing
to them.


Mediumistic Flashes.

A writer has the following to say concerning this class of mediumistic
persons: "Those persons who are naturally sensitive sometimes
experience strange and sudden impulses. Thoughts come to them 'in a
flash,' so to speak. They say things spontaneously which they had not
intended to say--the words seem to burst from them and 'say themselves.'
Others have equally sudden and fugitive clairvoyant experiences; they
see spirits where they least expect, and when they are absorbed in
something else; but when they strongly desire to 'see' or to receive
guidance, they get nothing. This state of affairs, in all probability,
is due to the fact that their susceptibility is not sufficiently
developed; their psychical impressibility can only be reached and acted
upon under specially favorable conditions, which are disturbed and
dissipated when the ordinary intellectual self is aroused.


Systematic Development.

"The remedy will be found in the systematic cultivation of interior
repose and confidence. The psychic must learn to regard it as a
perfectly natural experience that the spiritual states and positive
thoughts of excarnate people should impinge upon his spiritual sphere,
and while 'attentive to the holy vision,' should calmly accept the fact
and maintain the attitude or response; not anxiously nor demandingly,
but thankfully enjoying the spiritual communion and illumination thus
afforded to him. It is only natural that many people should desire to
become mediums, and that they should wish to ascertain what constitutes
mediumship, and what is required to secure its development. But those
who express these desires should remember that in all probabilities
months, if not years, of patient development have been necessary for the
success and efficiency of those celebrated mediums whom they admire and
probably envy." But, as we have said before, if the "call" to mediumship
be felt, then it may be heeded; though the person must be prepared to
pay the price of toil and work, patience and perseverance, required to
attain the mountain top of mediumship.


The Development Circle.

As we have repeatedly stated in the foregoing pages, the actual spirit
circle is the best possible means of developing the latent powers of
mediumship, and the simplest, readiest, and most effective method of
discovering the presence of such latent powers in the individual. As a
leading medium has told us, it is "the primary school for the study of
spiritual facts, and for the training of mediums." The "spirit circle,"
as most of you know, is a company of harmonious, earnest, sympathetic
persons joining their psychic powers for the purpose of aiding the
medium to establish the lines of psychic communication between the earth
plane and the planes of the spiritual world. It must here be stated that
by "development" we do not mean the cultivation of the powers of the
spirits, but rather the training and unfoldment of the powers of the
medium to receive and transmit the power exercised by the spirit
controls.


The Aspirational Attitude.

To those who purpose to develop their latent mediumistic powers by and
through the development circle, we would say that it is of the highest
importance that they should cultivate a trustful, hopeful mental
attitude, and a willingness to open themselves to the inflow of the
spiritual power of their friends of the spiritual planes. As a writer
has said, they should "make some mental preparation, such as eliminating
from their minds all disturbing or irritating thoughts, and by striving
to consciously realize union of purpose with those who may have
previously made their presence known or indicated their intention to
help in the work of the development of their mediumistic powers, by
mentally requesting that the spiritual ties may be strengthened. Even
where there has not been any clear indication of the presence of spirit
helpers, a generally aspirational and receptive attitude of mind will do
much towards providing favorable conditions."


Natural Unfoldment.

Again, the person wishing to develop his latent mediumistic powers must
exercise patience and perseverance, and must not insist upon a premature
attempt at revelation on the part of the spirits. The process of the
unfoldment of the mediumistic powers should be akin to that of the
unfoldment of the bud of the flower, that is to say, it must be gradual,
natural, and unforced. The writer above mentioned, says on this point:
"Too many people, instead of waiting until the spirits were ready to
communicate with them, have pressed for 'tests' before the connections
were properly made. They have complicated matters by their eager
questionings, and have worried the operators until everything went
wrong; and then, because the answers were incorrect, inconsequent and
misleading, or persistently negative, they declared that the spirit was
a deceiver, evil, or foolish, and, while having only themselves to
blame, gave up the sittings in disgust, whereas, had they been less
impetuous, less opinionated, less prejudiced, they would in all
probability have eventually obtained satisfactory proofs of the presence
of their spirit loved ones."


Persistent Watchful Waiting.

Some persons are so disappointed because they have not obtained results
after two or three sittings that they give up further efforts. It would
perhaps amaze such persons to know that many of the world's most
celebrated mediums have, in the beginning of their development circle
work, sat for several weeks, or even several months, at frequent
intervals, without obtaining more than the most meagre results; but they
afterwards developed the most marvelous power. An extreme case is cited
in the history of spiritualism, in which a couple sat night after night
for six months, without missing a sitting and without being rewarded by
a single physical result; but after this tedious and discouraging wait,
all at once, as it were, the spirits secured the most perfect kind of
communication through them, and difficult table tippings and levitation,
convincing raps, messages, writings, and finally materializations
follows, until their fame spread all over the world of spiritualism.


Building Lines of Communication.

Just how long it will require to obtain convincing results at the
development circle is a matter largely dependent upon certain
conditions. Much, of course, depends upon the faculty of the medium to
adjust and harmonize himself with the spirits, so as to furnish a "clear
wire" for them to operate over. Again, much depends upon the character
of the persons constituting the circle. A circle composed of
harmonious, helpful persons will do much to hasten the coming of the
manifestation, whereas one composed of inharmonious, sceptical,
impatient, and materialistic persons will do much to retard the progress
and development of the mediumistic powers.


Developing Concentration.

The following advice on this particular subject will be found helpful to
those contemplating the formation of development circles, and the
unfoldment of their latent powers of mediumship; it is from the pen of
an earnest student of this subject, and one who is himself a competent
medium. This person says: "One of the most important prerequisites for
success in the development of mediumship along spiritual lines is the
cultivation of the power of concentration. In the early days of the
movement the would-be medium was advised to be 'passive,' and passivity
was often construed into self-effacement. We are now learning to
distinguish between receptivity and docility, between apathy and
aspiration. A medium is not, and should not be willing to become a mere
irresponsible tool. For intelligent and beneficial association with, and
inspiration from, the people of the higher life, a certain degree of
abstraction is necessary. To cut one's self off from ordinary
conditions, to retire into the sanctuary of one's own inner
consciousness, to 'enter the silence' as it is sometimes called, is
helpful training for the preparation of conditions favorable for the
manifestation of spirit-power. The Quakers were true spiritualists in
this sense, and evidently realized the need for the concentration of the
soul's forces and their withdrawal from the outer plane, preparatory to
the descent of the spiritual influence that moved them to speak.


The Call for Illumination.

"The sincere supplication for illumination and guidance is never in
vain. The spirit breathes a serener air, and is calmed, strengthened,
and comforted by the subsequent reaction. It is harmonized thereby, and
thus becomes accordant to the psychic forces which, like the ocean's
tides, ebb and flow throughout the universe, and bathe every soul that
lies open to their vivifying and quickening influence. Still more, there
are those who dwell in the Light, whose thoughts and love go out to all
such as truly call upon God; and these, the ministering messenger
spirits, often pour their libations of sympathy into the sad hearts of
the sorrowful ones on earth, even though they remain unknown and their
interposition is unrecognized by those to whom they have given their
loving and helpful thoughts.


The Jacob's Ladder of Communion.

"By the earnest study of the conditions requisite for the development of
body, mind, and psychic sense, the intelligent medium will endeavor to
meet the friends who inspire him at least half way on the Jacob's ladder
of communion, and to enter into reciprocal and conscious fellowship with
them on the thought plane, so that their inspirations may freely flow
through his instrumentality to others, unobstructed by his personality.
Classes for the development of mediumship along these lines are very
much needed; classes in which the members are expected to take an
active part, not merely to sit and sit, and let the spirits do all the
work, but by systematic preparation and spiritual aspiration and
cultivated receptivity prepare themselves to become lucid and capable
instruments for the transmission of information and helpful influences
from the other side.


The Attainment of Excellence.

"There is but one course of procedure for the successful attainment of
excellence in any field of labor or thought, and that is by study and
training, by observation, by persevering application and determined
effort, by readiness to learn, and responsiveness to every influence
which will help to smooth the pathway to the desired success. The
intelligent medium who follows this course will not go blindly on
groping in the obscurity of the psychic realm, and becoming the tool for
unseen and unknown agents, but he will unfold his powers, and by
co-operating with them will learn to know and trust his preceptors,
until he may possibly become as a spirit among spirits, the conscious
possessor of such knowledge regarding his own spiritual nature and
powers that he will be a ready instrument in the hands of enlightened
spirit people, with whom he can knowingly work for human good."


What a Development Circle Is.

Now then, with the above advice and admonitions in mind, the persons who
desire to develop and unfold their mediumistic powers will do well to
take the necessary steps to form a development circle. The "circle" it
must be remembered, is not merely a crowd of persons gathered together
for the purpose of witnessing spiritualistic manifestations or
phenomena. Instead, it is a gathering of persons who desire to
co-operate in establishing relations with the world of spirits, and to
receive communications therefrom. In the case of the development circle,
the purpose is to demonstrate that well established spiritualistic
principle that the mediumistic faculty in all of its forms is best
developed and unfolded, cultivated and strengthened, by an actual
sitting in the circle, in such a way as to perfect and spiritualize the
magnetism of the sitters by their mutual action on each other, and by
the influence and power of the spirits employing such magnetic and
psychic forces so furnished them by the circle of harmonious sitters.
Or, as a writer has well expressed it: "The purpose for which a spirit
circle is held is that by the blending of the aura, psychic force, or
magnetic emanations of the sitters, the attention of disembodied spirits
may be attracted and a battery be formed by means of which they can
communicate with the circle. The focalization of this force rests with
the unseen operator, and if they are skilled in the 'modus operana,'
they know where, how, and in what way to use it to the best advantage."


Forming the Development Circle.

The circle should be composed of not less than four persons, and not
more than twelve. It is well to have an equal number of persons of each
sex, if this be possible; if not possible to obtain an equality of the
sexes, the effort should be made to come as near to that equality as is
possible. The members of the circle should seat themselves around a
table, and as nearly as is possible the sexes should be alternated in
this grouping, that is to say, a man should sit next to a woman, and so
on. It will be found well to have the same persons regularly attend the
circles, so far as is possible. Likewise, it will be found advantageous
to always use the same table, and to hold the circle in the same
room--but these things are not absolutely essential, and very good
results may often be obtained by having the members of the circle gather
at the different homes of its respective members. While cheerfulness is
well on the part of the sitters, there should be no indulgence in levity
and joking during the sitting. The room should be comfortably warmed and
lighted in the ordinary way.


The Sitters in the Circle.

The sitters will do well to occupy their same places at each sitting,
unless the spirits indicate otherwise. The medium, or in the absence of
a recognized medium the most sensitive person in the circle, should sit
in the circle at a place mentally recognized as the "head of the table,"
even though the table be circular in form. It will be well for the
sitters to hold each others' hands at the beginning of the circle, in
order to generate the necessary magnetism. But after the circle is
actually formed, the sitters should place their hands on the top of the
table, close to its edge; the small fingers of the hands of each sitter
touching those of the sitter on either side of him--in this way there is
a psychic and magnetic battery formed of the sitters, providing perfect
connection is maintained.


The Spirit Communication Code.

At the beginning, the leader should plainly announce the signalling
conditions, so as to avoid confusion on the part of the sitters and the
visiting spirits (for there are several codes in use, and confusion
sometimes occurs). The most general used and approved code is as
follows: "THREE indicates Yes; ONE indicates No; TWO indicates
'doubtful'; FOUR indicates 'don't know'; and FIVE indicates 'call the
alphabet.'" The numbers refer to the number of raps or table-tilts,
etc., given by the spirits in answer to questions asked them. When the
alphabet is called for, some one of the circle slowly calls out each
letter of the alphabet, in regular order, until a rap or table-tilt
indicate that the right letter has been indicated; this letter should
then be written down, and the alphabet again called, until the next
letter is indicated; and so on until the message is completed. For
instance, the name "John" would be spelt out as J-O-H-N, four callings
of the alphabet being necessary to obtain the same.


The Matter of Time Conditions.

The time at which the seances are held is not in itself important, but
it will be found best to fix such time at such an hour that will be most
convenient for the sitters, and at which their minds will not be
distracted by thoughts that they should return home, or should be
attending to certain household or business duties, etc. The seances
should be held not oftener than, say, twice a week, or at the most three
times a week. Each seance should be continued for about an hour or a
little over--certainly not over two hours at a time. The sitters should
be punctual in attendance, so that no time may be lost or wasted. The
idea should be that the spirit friends are awaiting your coming to
fulfill your engagement with them, and one should be as careful to keep
such an engagement as he would were the engagement with his most valued
friend or esteemed acquaintance. Regularity in attendance is also
important, as it is important that so far as possible the same general
conditions be maintained at each and every seance. The seance should be
started at the same hour on each occasion, at least so far as is
possible, so as to preserve the same time rhythm.


Opening of the Seance.

It will be well to open the seance with a few moments of earnest, silent
meditation--a few moments of dwelling "in the silence," as some have
well called it; and these moments should be observed in a religious and
devotional state of mind, all frivolity and flippancy being carefully
avoided. If some present feel moved to prayer, then by all means let the
prayer be made, for there can scarcely be a more fitting occasion for
reverent prayer than a properly conducted seance. A few moments of
hymn-singing may also be found advantageous in the direction of
producing the devotional state of mind on the part of the sitters. The
sitters should preserve a solemn frame of mind and reverent general
demeanor during the seance--perhaps the best model is that of an old
time Quaker Meeting in which the silent devout spiritual feeling was so
plainly manifest that it could almost be felt physically. Patience is
necessary in conducting a seance, and perseverance is essential. The
manifestations cannot be unduly forced, and there is often required a
great deal of psychical adjustment before the lines of the spiritual
communication between the two great planes of life are fully
established.


Developing a Medium.

If the circle be one devoted chiefly to the development of mediumistic
powers in some one of its members, then it will perhaps be best to have
only that particular medium present. The remainder of the sitters should
be highly sympathetic toward the developing medium, and should assume
the mental attitude of help and aid toward him. While the early results
of such a circle may not be so interesting as those at which a fully
developed medium is present, nevertheless the gradual unfoldment of the
powers of the medium will be found highly interesting, and the gradual
evolution of the character of the phenomena produced will be a liberal
education in itself. In case that in the circle there are no particular
persons regarded as being mediums, and where there is a general desire
to develop mediumistic powers among many or all of the sitters, there
must be carefully avoided anything approaching a rivalry between the
members of the circle; and at the same time a strong desire and perfect
willingness for the spirit power to manifest through whomsoever it may
prefer, without regard to the personal ambitions of the individual
sitters. Most certainly there must be no spirit of "competition" among
the sitters in the circle.


The Personnel of the Circle.

The personal composition of the spiritualistic circle is a very
important matter, and those entering into circle work should pay
careful attention to the personal and psychical character of those
composing the circle; and it may be added here that such work requires
very nice powers of discrimination, and a great degree of tact, in order
to preserve the proper character of the circle, and at the same time to
avoid wounding the pride of those who are to be rejected. Regarding the
character of those composing the circle, the following statement of a
practical medium will be found of importance. "There are some people who
are so sensitive that they should not sit in circles, because they are
liable to become charged with the psychic emanations from, and dominated
by the expectancy of, the sitters, but who are not influenced by spirit
power to any great extent. Or probably there may exist 'cross
magnetism,' that is to say the inharmonious magnetism of different
members who are antagonistic to each other. Some sitters may be
sarcastic, merely curious, or selfish, or mercenary, or not over clean,
sober or scrupulous, and all such surroundings act and react upon the
highly sensitive organization of the undeveloped medium, and, above all,
provide conditions favorable for the manifestations of mischievous or
malicious spirits, unless the medium is sufficiently developed, or is
protected by wise spirits powerful enough to resist or control such
influences. Like attracts like, as a general rule; but there are
exceptions to this, as to most rules, as, for instance, where
unfortunate or unhappy spirits are permitted to manifest, and are even
brought to the seance by other and more experienced spirit people, so
that they may be helped. The influence of the sitters in moulding the
conditions is too little realized. If they introduce an atmosphere of
suspicion, doubt, distrust, or detraction, they break the continuity of
the flow of psychic energy that has to be employed. By thus severing the
current and dissipating the power, they mar the conditions essential to
success; and, as all such disturbances of necessity center upon and
injuriously affect the sensitive medium, they render soul-satisfying and
uplifting communion impossible. To all sitters, we would say, 'You get
to a very great extent what you make conditions for, therefore open the
doors of the heavens by love and purity.'"


Changing the Sitters.

Changes in the membership of a circle is sometimes found to be quite
beneficial. If a circle meets night after night with the same
membership, but without obtaining any perceptible results, then it may
be well to consider the desirability of adding some new elements to the
membership in the hope of improving the conditions. Sometimes the
addition of a new sitter of the right physical and psychical temperament
works a most remarkable improvement, and in many of such cases
noteworthy phenomena are then produced almost from the time of the
change. We have seen circles in which the condition of non-success was
changed in a few moments to one of great and marked success by the
introduction of a new element among the sitters.


Adding a Medium.

Sometimes there may result certain physical phenomena such as table
tippings and movements of furniture, in cases in which there is a
sufficient amount of psychic force generated among the sitters; but in
such cases there may be an absolute failure to produce some of the
higher forms of mediumistic phenomena, such as, for instance, clear
spirit messages by raps or otherwise, the failure being caused by the
fact that the circle did not include in its membership any person of
sufficiently developed mediumistic powers to be considered a "medium."
In such cases the introduction into the circle of a person possessing
fairly developed mediumistic powers of the higher order may change the
condition of affairs at once, and almost immediately the higher
manifestations may present themselves. In such cases the soil is richly
fertilized and highly cultivated, and all that has been lacking is the
strong, vigorous seed of true mediumship. In such cases when a true
medium is discovered by means of his or her introduction into the circle
(for such discovery is often made in this way), it may be well for the
circle afterwards to devote itself to the development of that particular
medium. And it must not be forgotten that such development of the
particular medium frequently also results in the development of the
other members sitting in the circle.


Reasons for Changes.

In cases in which the spirits suggest changes in the order of sitting of
the members of the circle, or suggest other changes in the personnel of
the circle, such suggestions should be heeded, and those who are asked
to withdraw from the table should not feel hurt or offended, for there
is usually nothing personal in the matter, and no personal reflection
intended by the spirits; the whole matter is one connected with
psychical or magnetic requirements, and all should so accept it. A
writer on this subject has well said: "If you are requested, either by
the controlling intelligence or by the manager of the circle, to take
another place, or even if your room is desired for some unknown cause,
do not get angry and create a disturbance, but get with those with whom
you are in spiritual harmony and try it again. All who have succeeded
have passed through great trials and failures, and when success is
gained, think of what you have gained. A knowledge of immortality,
possibly, or you have assisted in producing an instrument through which
proofs of immortality may be given."


Psychic Attunement.

One of the most common faults of the sitters at a circle is to become
unduly impatient, and to try to force matters to a clear manifestation
of phenomena almost from the moment of the start. This is all wrong, and
is frequently the cause of many failures to obtain the higher phases of
mediumistic phenomena. Sitters should remember this important point,
i.e., that the first requisite of the circle should be to secure perfect
and free communication and flow of spiritual power--after this the more
elaborate phases of phenomena may be obtained with comparative ease. One
should hold in mind the illustration of a great wireless telegraph
system, in which the sending and receiving instruments have not as yet
been placed in perfect attunement. In such a case it is of course
necessary for the two respective sets of instruments to be adjusted so
that they may be in perfect attunement with each other; and until this
is accomplished, there can be messages sent or received
properly--certainly none received in this way. If this idea be held in
mind, their circle will probably secure the psychic attunement in a much
shorter time than otherwise.


Pre-Test Manifestations.

Do not be in too much of a hurry to obtain "test" messages. Let the
communications flow on in a somewhat rambling manner at first, until the
lines of communication are fully and firmly established, and then you
may begin to think about asking test questions of the spirits in order
to establish their identity. A writer says on this point: "Should table
movements occur, or raps be heard, let them go on for a little. Do not
ask test questions just yet. Request repetitions, or ask for them to be
clearer or louder, so that they may be sharp and decisive. You may also
ask for a certain number of movements or raps. After that, you may
proceed to ask questions as to whether the circle is sitting in the best
arrangement for success. If changes are desired, these should be made as
suggested. It may happen that one or more of the sitters may be
requested to change places, or to withdraw from the table altogether. In
such a case the sitter should not take umbrage for it merely means that
their psychical conditions do not blend with those of the rest of the
circle."


Premature Tests.

Regarding the matter of premature tests, or unreasonable demands, the
same writer further says: "Remember that the first requisite is to
establish the channel of communication; and all personal questions as to
who and what the spirit is should be reserved until the initial
difficulties are overcome. It is at first most probable that the spirit
operators will not be fully aware just what effect they are producing,
and the mind of the medium may not as yet be sufficiently passive, in
fact it may be in a sort of state of protest against being acted upon in
this particular way; accordingly, it is extremely unwise to attempt to
obtain responses to test questions or to secure evidences of the
identity of the spirit under these imperfect conditions. Many mediums
and inquirers have been deterred from further development or
investigation because such questions have been prematurely put and the
answers pressed for, with the result that confusing and contradictory
responses were given, and the conclusion was hastily drawn that it was
all fraud, delusion, of the devil."


Forcing Tests.

Another writer has said on this point: "I then, in my anxiety, made a
mistake which anxious inquirers sometimes make. I wanted more--I pressed
for another test, forgetting the difficulties of mediumship, and the
supreme effort which must have been made to give me what I had obtained.
And this resulted in failure after remarkable tests had been given."
Another writer, commenting upon the last quoted statement, says: "This
is exactly how mediums are used; they give test after test, not to
satisfy, but only to produce the desire for more. Then when the power is
weakened, comes the inability--or 'fraud,' as the imperfection in
mediumship is often called. This will be the case until they can have
the only condition which is suitable for spiritual communion--passive
trust and confidence. Real tests cannot come when sought with
materialistic conditions. The tests come unsought, unasked for."


Spirit Directions.

Another point which should be borne in mind by the sitters in the circle
is that the spirits should be consulted as to just what they wish to
manifest at the seance. They should be asked to state plainly just what
order of phenomena they desire to manifest and demonstrate, and just
what they wish the circle to do in order to create the best conditions
for the manifestation. And it will be found advisable to heed the wishes
and instructions of the spirits in such cases, and to conform as far as
possible with the same. In this way the intelligent co-operation of
spirits and the circle may be obtained, and the most desirable results
be obtained. However, there is a limit to this acceptance and course,
and in no case should the limits of reasonableness be exceeded in the
matter. As a writer has well said: "It may happen that the conditions
asked for by the communicating intelligence may seem to be ludicrous or
impracticable; and in such case representations to that effect should be
made to the spirit, and if such instructions are persisted in, except
where, through long association, confidence is felt in the spirit, or
very clear evidence of knowledge has been manifested, the medium and
sitters, exercising their own reasoning powers, should quietly and
firmly decline to do what is asked of them, and some other course should
be suggested. We do not advise either medium or sitters to blindly
accept or follow what is given to or through them. Reason should ever
reign, but even reason will show that in experimental work it is
sometimes advisable to tentatively adopt and follow some course that may
not, at first sight, appear quite reasonable."


Questioning the Spirits.

After a satisfactory arrangement of the sitters is obtained, and the
table tiltings or rappings have assumed a clear, definite character,
then the sitters may proceed to ascertain the identity of the spirit
seeking to communicate to the circle; or else to ascertain whether the
spirit wishes to deliver a message directed specially to some particular
one of the sitters. In the latter case, the person indicated should
prepare to question the spirit direct, either verbally or else silently
and mentally. In either case the question should be stated clearly and
to the point, so that the spirit may give a simple definite answer.
Questions which may be answered by a simple "Yes" or "No" are of course
preferable. If the spirit agrees to move the table, or else produce
raps, as the alphabet is called over letter by letter, the communication
and answers may of course be given in much fuller detail. In such case
the spirit may be called on to spell out its name, and to designate its
relationship to any of the sitters; or even to spell out a complete
message. In addressing the spirit one should pursue the same general
course employed in addressing questions to a friend in the flesh; and
care should be taken to address the spirit politely and in a kindly
tone. Some spirits are very sensitive concerning these details, and will
resent any impoliteness or discourtesy, or flippancy from strangers.


Substance and Shadow.

Moreover, the earnest investigator of spiritualistic phenomena must
always bear in mind that the mere production of mediumistic phenomena of
the physical phase is not the real object of the investigation and
sittings. These things, interesting as they may be in themselves, should
be regarded as merely the incidents of the intelligent communication and
reception of messages from the inhabitants of the higher planes of life
and existence. The spiritualistic circle should be more than a mere
"wonder shop" in which are exhibited strange and unusual physical
phenomena; rather should it be regarded as the receiving end of the
wireless system over which we may and do receive valuable communications
from those who have passed on before us.

As a writer has said: "It is not so much that the table moves with or
without contact, or that strange rappings are heard, that is of
paramount importance, but that by these means of communication actual
and intelligent communication can be obtained and maintained with
so-called dead people; and evidences of spirit identity, as well as
loving and cheering messages may be obtained in that way from loved ones
who were supposed to be gone forever. This is the important point to be
established beyond all peradventure."



PART IX

MEDIUMISTIC PHENOMENA


Some students of this book who have noted in the foregoing pages certain
references to the conduct of the sitters in the circle may ask
themselves the question: "Why are the SITTERS so important, when the
power is really exerted by the spirits through the MEDIUM?" In fact,
such questions, often uttered in the spirit of adverse criticism, are
frequently propounded by sceptics to spiritualists, and it is well that
the answer should be correctly given. As a matter of fact the
understanding of such answer will mean the possession of some important
facts concerning the phenomena of mediumship, and without which the
investigator will possibly wander far astray from the main road of truth
concerning such phenomena.


The Part Played by the Sitters.

All of the best authorities on the subject of spiritualism are
practically agreed concerning the important part played by the sitters
in the circle in all manifestations of spirit power. As J. J. Morse
says: "There are three factors concerned in mediumship: (1) the spirit
controlling; (2) the mental atmosphere of the medium controlled; and (3)
the mental atmosphere of the people surrounding the medium." And as A.
Morton has said: "The requirements for honesty on the part of mediums
are equally binding upon investigators; they must have honesty of
purpose if they expect to attract honest spirits."


Result of Bad Sitters.

And Wallis has said: "Although the spirits may be intensely anxious to
demonstrate their power, they are sometimes repelled from those whom
they seek to approach by the bristling and discordant conditions of
mind that prevail among the sitters, who disperse with a feeling of
dissatisfaction and disappointment. If the sitters only knew it, the
so-called failure was directly traceable to the destructive
thought-atmosphere with which they surround themselves and the medium.
Too frequently they do not prepare themselves for 'the hour's
communion with the dead,' and their mental attitude is anything but
conductive to success. They do not put away the thronging thoughts,
anxieties, and worries of their busy lives, but carry them right into
the seance chamber, yet expect good spiritual results. Both sitter and
medium may very easily destroy the indispensable conditions of
spirit-manifestation, and the medium's honesty, not his want of
growth, or of knowledge, is called in question by the investigator who
knows, and perhaps cares, nothing for the occult laws he has violated,
not obeyed."


Mental Atmosphere of the Medium.

Likewise, it must not be forgotten that an important factor in the
production of mediumistic phenomena is that which Morse, in the above
quotation, has called "the mental atmosphere of the medium controlled."
In many cases the spirit powers are present and ready to manifest
freely, and the mental atmosphere of the sitters is likewise desirable
and sympathetic, but still the manifestations are but faint, irregular,
and generally unsatisfying--the weak link of the chain being found in
the mental state of the medium, and consequently in the mental
atmosphere arising from the same. Such undesirable mental states and
atmospheres may be said to arise principally from two general causes, as
follows: (1) Desire on the part of the medium to produce sensational or
brilliant results, and (2) Doubt on the part of the medium concerning
the genuineness and validity of the communications. Let us consider each
of these in further detail.


The Mediumistic Mind.

If the medium is filled with the idea or notion of producing brilliant
or sensational results, he will in all probability so disturb the
placidity of the receiving surface of his mind that the latter will fail
to register or record the impressions being made upon it by the spirit
vibrations. It is similar to the case of a placid bosom of a deep lake
which, normally, will reflect clearly and distinctly the images of the
surrounding scenery cast upon it from the light waves; but which, if
disturbed by strong breezes, will exhibit merely a distorted, disturbed,
incomplete, and untrue reflection of the surrounding scenery cast upon
its surface. A strong desire of the kind mentioned will tend to agitate
and disturb the normal placid condition of the mental reflecting surface
of the mediumistic mind.


Mediumistic "Stage Fright."

In the same way the placid reflecting surface of the mediumistic mind
may become disturbed by the presence of fear, doubt, and distrust in the
mind of the medium. It may at first seem strange that the medium should
doubt the manifestations being made through his mentality, provided that
he be honest and genuine. But the answer and explanation is very simple.
The medium (particularly the young medium) may become panic-stricken by
the thought that "perhaps this is merely the result of my own
imagination or fancy, instead of spirit power," and the result will be
that he will begin to halt and stumble, stammer and stutter, instead of
allowing the message to flow through him uninterrupted. This is
particularly true when the message is of the nature of a test of
identity, and where the vocal organs of the medium are being employed in
the manifestation. It occurs far more frequently than the public
suppose, that the medium is stricken by stage-fright or the panic of
fear, arising from the causes above given, i.e. the sudden fear that he
is allowing his fanciful imagination to run away with him instead of his
being under genuine control.


The Psychic Telephone System.

The medium should ever strive to guard against this harmful mental
state, and should open himself completely to the spirit influence,
casting aside all fear and doubt, and placing all responsibility upon
the controlling spirit or band of helpers. The medium should remember
that he is merely the "medium" or psychic telephone system, and is not
an active party to the process of spirit communication. He should,
therefore, never either unduly strive to please, nor be fearful or
distrustful concerning the validity of the manifestation being made
through him. Let the spirits attend to their end of the line, and the
sitters to the other end--the medium is on neither end of the line, but
is the line itself.


Interrupted Communications.

It should not be forgotten, in this connection, that the spirits have
their own difficulties to contend with. In the current slang phrase,
they "have troubles of their own" to overcome in the production of
mediumistic phenomena. Not only does the spirit wishing to communicate
have to draw sufficient psychic power from the medium and the sitters,
not only has he to scientifically adjust the apparatus at the sending
end of the psychic telephonic line, but he has also to be sure that he
is actually communicating the message so that it may be received by the
sitters. In such cases the spirit is placed in a position similar to
that of a person at one end of a telephone line, who after had an answer
to his opening "Hello!" talks away, thinking that the person at the
other end is hearing every word he utters, perfectly unconscious that
the communication has been interrupted from some cause or other common
to telephone lines. How often do we, in our telephone conversations,
interrupt our flow of talk to anxiously inquire, "Are you still there?"
or "Do you hear me?"


Some Difficulties of the Spirits.

A writer on the subject has well said regarding this difficulty on the
part of the communicating spirit: "Spirits have many difficulties to
overcome." On one occasion, a medium felt the influence of an arisen
friend very strongly. It was accompanied by an intense desire to speak,
and yet the medium was unable to give utterance to that which the spirit
wished to have said. In answer to an inquiry that was subsequently made
as to why the spirit had been unable to communicate with his dear ones,
one of the familiar controls of the medium explained that he thought
that he had actually spoken. His feeling of nearness to them was so
vivid, and his wish to express himself through the lips of the medium
had been so intense, that it was only after he had ceased his efforts to
control that he realized that he had only THOUGHT and INTENDED, but had
not succeeded in compelling the sensitive to utter his message. This
will perhaps explain why mediums sometimes rise to their feet and act as
if they were about to speak, but get no further--they do not receive the
impression, or the right mental impulse; they feel as if they COULD
speak and yet they have nothing to say. At such times a few words of
sympathy and inquiry from the conductor of the circle may assist the
control to realize the situation and succeed in his endeavors to
communicate.


Difficulties Overcome.

"Even on this side, when we send telegraphic messages or use the
telephone, mistakes and misunderstandings are by no means uncommon
occurrences, and our letters sometimes create an impression in the mind
of the reader which we did not intend to convey. Is it any wonder, then,
that messages from the other side are imperfectly impressed upon, and
incorrectly rendered by, the medium? Most persons who have attempted to
transfer thoughts to mesmerized sensitives have realized that general
ideas can be transmitted much more easily than names, dates, or specific
words can be impressed upon or expressed by the subject. The wonder is,
not that so few names, ages, and special details are given by spirits to
and through mediums, but that, considering all the attendant
circumstances, so MANY 'test' messages are continually being given, both
privately and in public."


The Psychic Triangle.

In considering the question of the requisites of the mediumistic circle,
the student should remember always that there is A PSYCHIC TRIANGLE in
all such circles, viz., a triangle of which the spirit constitutes one
side, the medium a second side, and the sitters a third side. And it is
essential that a harmony and sympathy between all three sides of the
triangle should be preserved and maintained. Therefore, sitters at the
circle should endeavor to do their part in producing and maintaining
such harmony with both the medium, the spirits, and finally WITH EACH
OTHER--and this last is not the least, by any means. Unless there be at
least a very fair degree of harmony between the several members
constituting the circle, there will be something important lacking in
their harmony of the circle as a whole toward the other two sides of the
psychical triangle.


Harmonious Relationship.

The sitters composing the circle should always remember that mutual
harmony is a most important factor contributing to the success of the
manifestations sought to be secured. Accordingly, each sitter should
strive to bring himself or herself into a sympathetic and harmonious
relationship with each and every other sitter, so far as is possible. To
accomplish this result the sitters should endeavor, so far as is
possible, to lay aside their respective prejudices, jealousies, and
differences of opinion. These incidents of their personality should be
left, together with their hats and outer wraps, in the outer hall of the
house in which the seance is held. Differences of religion, politics,
race and creed, all should be cast aside at least temporarily, in order
that the greatest amount of harmony should be manifested by the group. A
safe rule to follow is this: seek to find the largest number of points
of mutual agreement, and to set aside all the rest of the items of
personal tastes, customs and habits of feeling and thought. Dwell
together on the plane of common agreement, shutting out the planes of
respective disagreements. In this connection we should state that the
customary attitude of cold reserve, blended and colored by suspicion,
which too often is found between comparative strangers, is far from
being helpful in producing the best conditions for the seance. For the
time being, at least, the sitters should try to remember that they are
all members of one great human family, and united by the bonds of common
origin and nature.


The Discordant Note.

A writer recites an incident in a circle which he once attended, which
so thoroughly illustrates the point just made, that we think it worth
while to reproduce it here. He says: "On one occasion in particular, we
had a remarkable illustration of the detrimental influence of one or two
sitters. It occurred at a seance at which a number of mediums were
present, and, under ordinary circumstances, successful results would
have been practically certain; but this was not an ordinary seance--at
least, not in the opinion of one lady who apparently imagined that she
had been invited to discover fraud, and that the rest of us were
suspicious characters. Up to the moment of her appearance in the circle
we were a happy family of sociable folk, and enjoyed a very pleasant
season of conversational interchange. When, however, the said lady,
accompanied by a friend, joined the company, there was a silence that
could be felt. The social temperature fell rapidly--people visibly
stiffened and became constrained. The two ladies appeared to feel afraid
to speak lest they should say anything that might be used by the
mediums, and spoke in monosyllables. Sitting bolt upright, grim and
silent, they drew up to the table, and when the phenomena began they
displayed no signs of interest. Their 'detective' attitude was so
objectionable that even those who had endeavored to thaw out these
self-constituted Sherlock Holmeses, gave up the attempt, and, in
consequence, what had promised to be a really enjoyable evening, proved
one of the most uncomfortable it has been our lot to experience."


Antagonistic Elements.

Another incident of the kind is related by a writer, as follows: "On one
occasion, when some experiments were being made by a medium, under
control, in the direction of psychometry and clairvoyance, a lady
expressed a desire to be the subject for delineation. After one or two
efforts the medium exclaimed, 'I am very sorry, but for some reason I am
quite unable to get anything from you, or for you.' Shortly afterwards
the lady in question remarked to one of the sitters, 'I knew he would
not be able to give me anything. That is the third medium that I have
knocked out.' The failure to obtain results under such impossible
conditions is a proof of the genuine psychic nature of the powers of the
mediums. If they were pretenders they would succeed in doing something
under any circumstances and in spite of such adverse psychic
conditions." While we are far from holding that the sitters in a circle
should lay aside all ordinary caution and good judgment, and instead to
assume the mental attitude of utter and unquestioning credulity and
acceptance, we do positively declare that the mental state of
preconceived distrust and suspicion is often almost fatal to the
production and demonstration of the highest manifestations of spirit
phenomena.


The Open Mind.

The proper mental state of the scientific investigator of spiritualistic
phenomena is that of "the open mind." The sitters should endeavor to lay
aside all prejudices and preconceived conceptions, and in place thereof
should endeavor to hold a fair, impartial mental attitude--and this
accompanied by a desire to have the manifestations proceed naturally,
freely and fully. The results should be sympathetically awaited and
received, and the judgment of careful reasoning withheld until afterward
when the whole proceedings may be recalled and considered in the light
of cold reason. One has but to consider the extremely sensitive
psychical condition of the mentality of the medium, and the nicely
balanced mental atmosphere of the circle, to realize how easily this
sensitiveness may be affected, and the nice balance be disturbed, by the
projection of strong mental waves of distrust, suspicion, and antagonism
into the atmosphere of the circle. The attitude of the intelligent
scientific investigator should be that of a calm and observant soul.
Such an investigator should have what Sir William Crookes once called "a
mind to let," i.e., a mind from which all prejudices and preconceived
theories and notions have been ejected for the time being, and into
which Truth, from any source, should always be welcomed as a tenant.
Instead of seeking to throw obstacles in the way of the medium, one
should endeavor to assist by mental attitude and demeanor, and by
observance of the necessary conditions, in the production of the spirit
manifestations and in the demonstration of spirit identity.


Spirits and the Sense of Humor.

It is not necessary for the sitters to assume an attitude of
preternatural gravity and solemnity. Instead, they should be natural and
cheerful, though of course not flippant or trifling, or indulging in an
exhibition of the cheap remarks which by so many is mistaken for wit.
The sense of humor, however, need not be thrown aside or discarded, for
as all investigators know many of the spirit visitors have a very highly
developed sense of humor, and sometimes even go so far as to seemingly
endeavor to shock some of the melancholy, over-serious, "prunes and
prism" type of sitters. As a writer well says: "Spirits are human still,
and a good, breezy laugh, a hearty, joyous, kindly sympathetic
disposition, goes a long way to open the avenues by which they can
approach us." Another has said: "Experience has taught that the
spiritual circle should be presided over by 'a pure heart and a strong
head'--to which qualities might well be added a well-ordered development
of the sense of humor, for the absence of humor often tends to make
philosophy grotesquely ill-proportioned."


Rhythmic Harmony.

The manifestation of rhythmic harmony often materially aids in the
generation of psychic power, and the consequent production of
advantageous conditions at the circle. Many circles are opened by having
the several sitters indulge in harmonious rhythmic breathing for a few
minutes--all breathing in unison--in order to produce this condition of
rhythm. Those who have never practiced this unison of rhythmic breathing
will be surprised at the consciousness of psychical harmony which may be
produced in this way among a number of persons gathered together in a
circle. This principle of RHYTHM is what is really involved in the call
of many spirits for singing at the beginning of a seance. In singing
there is a certain unison and rhythm unconsciously observed, and it is
this rather than the air or words of the songs which produces the desire
conditions. A writer states that upon one occasion a manifesting spirit
said: "It isn't NOISE that I want; it's HARMONY! If you cannot sing, you
can at least count out loud, and count altogether--THAT may give us the
right vibrations." That spirit had the right idea, and one which it
would be well for all sitters to remember and put into effect. Vibration
is the secret of all things, and rhythm is the measure and spirit of all
vibrations; therefore, the very HARMONY of a circle may be said to be
rhythmic. There is a great truth involved in these statements, and you
will do well to ponder over them.


Retarding Factors.

It should be almost unnecessary to state that haste, hurry and
impatience are retarding factors in a spiritualistic seance; but, alas,
too many persons seem to be totally unaware of this important fact. We
call your attention to the following remarks concerning this point, the
same having been made by a writer on the subject who himself is a medium
of extended experience. He says: "Impatience and anxiety are
disintegrating mental conditions. People who are all the time looking at
their watches and thinking, 'Oh! I wish they would hurry up.' 'Oh! do be
quick, don't keep us here all night, we shall surely miss our train,'
etc., are disturbers of the peace, and break the conditions which
require harmony and repose. 'We have found out that we cannot hurry
them,' said a lady who had enjoyed much experience in circles; and
consequently, when you are sitting for different phenomena, you need to
have plenty of time and be prepared to sit good humoredly for hours, if
need be, to see it through; and then results are likely to speedily
ensue; whereas the more you try to hurry, the more anxious you become,
the less likelihood is there that you will secure results at all. You
can surely realize that hurry, impatience, anxiety, intense expectancy,
fear and suspicion must of necessity disturb the conditions and prove
inimical to the efforts of the spirit operators to present clear and
convincing demonstrations of their power and identity."


Reasonable Demands of Spirits.

In the above stated instance, and others similar to it, it at first
seems as if the spirits were overparticular, and "finnicky" about the
conditions, but a little careful thought will show you that this is not
the real state of affairs at all. The spirits are not "finnicky," but
are merely desirous of securing the conditions necessary to a successful
manifestation, and all their efforts are bent toward that end. This, and
this alone, is the cause of their so-called "finnickiness." Surely they
are justified in this--would not any and all of us feel the same way if
we were trying to establish communications with another plane, where
such communication largely dependent upon the production and maintenance
of certain conditions? I think so.


Harmonious Conditions.

It is not an easy task to give specific directions for development of
mediumistic power for the guidance of one who is desirous of unfolding
such powers after they have first manifested their presence in him. In
fact, as many of the best authorities on the subject agree, it is
practically impossible to lay out a course of cut-and-dried directions
of this kind. This arises logically from the conditions present in such
cases, and from the special circumstances surrounding the subject of
mediumship. In fact, it may be broadly stated that at the beginning the
medium can do but little in the direction of such development, other
than to present harmonious conditions through which the spirits may be
able to manifest their presence and their power.


The Channel of Communication.

It must be always remembered that the medium is not the active agent in
the production of mediumistic phenomena--he is not called to DO anything
except to passively act as the medium or channel of communication
between the two planes of existence. He is always the intermediary
between the two planes, and is not the active agent on either plane. The
active agents are the spirits on the one plane, and the sitters in the
circle on the other plane. The sitters must supply much of the actual
operative power from the one plane, and the spirits must do all of the
communication from the other plane. The medium serves to connect the two
opposite ends of the psychic telephone system so that the messages may
pass through and over the mediumistic channel, secure and maintain the
best psychic conditions.


The Role of the Spirits.

We have spoken of the part of the work which it is necessary for the
sitters to perform in order to And now we shall have something to say
concerning the part to be played properly by the spirits wishing to
communicate. It must not be supposed for a moment that every spirit is
possessed of the necessary knowledge enabling it to communicate easily
through a medium, or even to develop the medium so that he may become an
efficient channel of communication. Spirits are frequently found to be
sadly deficient in such knowledge and experience, and the development of
the medium as well as the production of satisfactory phenomena, suffer
from this lack. The spirits who seek to use a medium may or may not be
fitted for such task. Many spirits are utterly unable to properly
develop a medium; some fail by reason of their lack of knowledge, and
others fail because of their lack of special aptitude for the task.


Differences Among Spirits.

A writer on this subject well says regarding this particular point:
"Some spirits may lack both knowledge and aptitude; others may have the
knowledge, but yet fail from want of the power to control. They may be
able to affect one mediumistic person and not another. Likewise, they
may be able to use a sensitive medium for one phase of mediumship, and
yet be unable to succeed in any other direction. A spirit may be in such
conditions that he can produce good physical phenomena; he may, however,
try to do so through a sensitive who is fitted only for trance or
clairvoyant mediumship, but who does not possess the quality or psychic
force for sensuous manifestations. A medium who is naturally qualified
for physical demonstrations may persist in desiring trance or
inspirational mediumship, and be determined to become a speaker or
nothing.


Disturbing Elements.

"Frequently at the outset both spirits and sitters are ignorant of their
powers, of the conditions necessary for success, and the association
that exists between them being affectional rather than intellectual or
spiritual, they have to grope their way towards each other. It follows,
therefore, that experiments have to be made on BOTH sides. Sitters and
young mediums often spoil the seances by over-anxiety. There would not
be half so much heard of 'evil spirits' (so-called) if more regard were
paid to the necessity of maintaining a calm, patient, and serene frame
of mind. Some people become excited as soon as phenomena commences;
mediums not infrequently get nervous or timid when they feel that they
are being affected, and, although they desire to be controlled, they are
AFRAID to submit to the influences when they are likely to lose
consciousness. All these are disturbing elements, and naturally
interfere with the flow of the forces that are to be utilized, and
prevent the success that is desired. A spirit without any very definite
purpose, finding himself in the presence of a mediumistic person, may
seek to influence him, and spasmodic actions may result. Unless the
control should soon give evidence of clear thought and definite purpose,
he should be requested, in a kindly and courteous manner, to seek the
assistance of some spirit who understands the methods to be employed,
and induce him to exert his power for the benefit of the medium and the
circle."


Impersonation Mediumship.

One of the most interesting phases of mediumship, and the one perhaps
most sought after by earnest seekers of the truth concerning those who
have passed over to a higher plane of existence, is that commonly known
as "impersonation mediumship," or perhaps "impersonating test
mediumship," in which the vocal organs of the medium are employed by the
communicating spirit in order to speak directly to those in the circle,
or to the visiting friend of the decarnate spirit who comes into the
presence of the medium. Many mediums devote their entire time and
attention to this phase of mediumship, and place themselves at the
service of those on the earth plane who wish to converse directly with
their spirit friends or relatives who have passed on. This is by far the
most satisfying phase of mediumship to those on the earth plane who are
thus enabled to receive communications, and perhaps even direct answers
to specific questions made to them. The most convincing evidences of the
identity of the communicating spirit are also obtained through this
particular form of mediumship. And this affording of comfort to those
still on the earth plane is one of the most satisfying features of
mediumship, and one which will do more than aught else to reconcile the
medium to annoyances and to the personal sacrifices so often made by the
medium.


The True Purpose of Mediumship.

A writer has well given to mediums the following inspiring message
concerning the nature, purpose and aims of their work: "The modes of
spirit manifestation are many, the phases wonderfully varied, but, like
a golden cord running through them all, there is a distinct purpose of
bringing to those on earth the glad tidings and proof positive of
continued conscious personal experience in the life after death. The
process of psychic development is usually slow, and the medium will be
likely to grow disheartened; but by looking back over the ground already
traversed, and by comparing the faint efforts made at the commencement
with the later and fuller indications of spirit power, he should feel
encouraged, and proceed with renewed vigor."


Gradual Development.

The best authorities constantly impress upon young mediums the fact that
they should develop their mediumistic powers to a considerable degree
before they venture to give public seances or exhibitions of their
power. As Dr. Dean Clarke well says: "Novices in mediumship have no
business to assume obligations they are not fully qualified to fulfil.
Let them take the counsel metaphorically given by Jesus, to 'tarry in
Jerusalem till their beards are grown.'" They should by all means wait
until the spirits are strong enough to control and guard them from the
meddlesome interferences of other persons, both those in the flesh and
those out of it. Many spirits will overwork the medium, and the latter
not knowing enough to protect himself will often suffer by reason
thereof. On the other hand, young mediums often yield to the
importunities of friends and other sitters, and will try to oblige and
satisfy them, even often at the expense of their own powers and forces.


Public Seances.

A writer, himself a successful medium, gives the following good advice
to young mediums: "I strongly advise all mediums to wait and serve out
their apprenticeship thoroughly before they undertake to sit for
sceptics or perform public work, either as test, impersonating,
speaking, seeing, or healing mediums; and the best place to secure the
necessary experience, training and unfolding is in the home circle.
After a certain stage has been reached, however, the medium who has been
used for impersonations will in all probability begin to display the
powers of clairvoyance and to receive vivid impressions. Then will come,
or they will be accompanied by, the efforts of the spirits to pass
beyond the purely personal and limited forms of expression associated
with the affectionate messages and greetings, to the consideration and
explanation of the conditions and experiences of life on the other side.
Spirits who can teach and give more sequential and sustained addresses
will in all likelihood assume control, and under such conditions it will
be found necessary to enlarge the circle and introduce fresh sitters.
The clairvoyant, or psychometrist, needs new subjects with whom to
experiment, and the speaking medium requires an audience to listen to
his discourses, so that the next step beyond the small private circle
may well be a semi-public one, or an 'after circle' such as is
frequently held at the close of the public Sunday services in many
towns, at which mediums who have reached this stage are afforded the
opportunities they need.


Home Circle Development.

"Around the family table, where those who are united in affection meet
to hold joyous communion with their spirit friends, where the blended
desire ascends to the spiritual plane, and becomes the potent magnetic
attraction, by which those friends can establish harmonious relations
with the sitters--in such a circle and under such conditions even a weak
degree of mediumistic responsiveness to the outpouring from the spirit
side will become intensified and exalted, until rhythmic vibrations are
established and thought and emotion will readily pass from one to
another, and all will be attuned. The best method of cultivation is to
regard the mediumistic sensitiveness as a natural and desirable quality,
to be evolved by training and experiments, under the direction of the
reason and the conscience. In this manner the tribunal which decides the
conduct of life is ever present, and no matter what influences are
brought to bear on the sensitive he remains steadfast, realizing that
the responsibility for use or abuse rests upon himself."


Undue Prolongation of Seances.

There is a great temptation to young mediums to allow their enthusiasm,
and desire to aid in demonstrating spiritualistic phenomena, to cause
them to prolong their seances far beyond the limits which prudence and
regard for the medium's physical well-being would dictate. There is a
certain stimulation and excitement arising from the manifestation of
phenomena through the medium, and this in itself is helpful rather than
hurtful--a tonic rather than a depressant; but like all other forms of
overindulgence, and excessive yielding to this excitement tends to bring
on a reaction and a swing to the opposite emotional extreme, and the
medium suffers thereby in many cases. There comes a time in all seances
when the high-water mark of psychic power is reached, and this is a good
time for the medium to bring the seance to a close--in fact, experienced
mediums do precisely this very thing at this particular time. But this
point once passed, there is experienced a peculiar weakening and
depressing feeling, this often being accompanied by a physical weariness
and a feeling of chilliness in the extremities, or even a slight chilly
feeling over the whole body. When these feelings are experienced, the
medium should remember that the limit of reason has been passed, and he
should bring matters to a close without further loss of time.
Experienced spirits will usually detect the approach of the reaction
time, and will, themselves, bring the seance to a close, independent of
any action on the part of the medium. But when the spirits are not
experienced, they fail to notice this, or even may become careless about
such things in their desire to communicate to the circle. In the latter
cases, the medium must take care of himself.


Good Advice to Young Mediums.

A mediumistic writer gives the following advice on this subject to young
mediums: "Never forget that your nerve-vital energy is used and expended
in the exercise of your mediumship, and that the supply is limited,
hence the necessity for care and moderation. Too frequent, prolonged,
or discordant seances; inharmonious conditions and sittings, when you
are already jaded and exhausted, are therefore to be avoided. If you
make excessive demands upon your energies, nervous prostrations and
derangements are an almost inevitable consequence. It is not the use of
mediumship, but its abuse that is dangerous--perversion and excess are
as injurious in this direction as they are in others, whereas temperate
and healthful exercises are strengthening and exhilarating. If you feel
'run down,' decline to act. If you feel that the circle is inharmonious,
or that the sitters are depleted and exacting, refuse to sit. If you
feel that you are tired, and feel weary and debilitated on the day
following your seances, you may be sure that you are sitting too long,
or that you require the help of a larger circle of congenial friends to
supply the requisite psychic force for your further development."


Self-Protection for Mediums.

Another writer says on this subject: "Mediumship occasionally acts in
such a manner that it becomes a stimulant to every organ and function of
the system, and the individual becomes excited, nervous, and irritable;
hence, the greater the acceleration of physiological functions as the
result of psychical influences upon the human body, the more need of
caution and restraint in every department of physiological life." But it
must not be understood that the proper practice of mediumship is harmful
and not conducive to good health. On the contrary, as a writer has said:
"We consider the highest degree of physical health perfectly compatible
with the best manifestation of mediumship." Another writer has well
said: "If you are not robust enough, if you have not sufficient
knowledge and self-mastery to use your will and maintain control over
your psychic self; if you are unable to guard against the adverse
emanations or the drawing power of others, you had better take lessons
in concentration and psychic self-protection; and until you understand
the art of self-possession, refrain from attempting to cultivate your
sensitiveness. It will never do for you to be 'too sensitive'--be
natural, sensible, and strong."


Danger in Indiscriminate Magnetizing.

Another point against which the medium should guard himself, is that of
allowing others, indiscriminately, to "magnetize" him to "aid his
development" or to "increase his power." Mediums, particularly while in
the psychic condition, are very sensitive and susceptible to outside
mental influences. And for this reason they should be particularly on
guard against allowing themselves to be "magnetized" or influenced
psychically by persons of whom they know nothing. Otherwise, the medium
not only places himself under subjection to the mentality and
emotionality of strangers and undesirable persons, just as would a
hypnotic subject if he placed himself under the control of such persons.
Moreover, in the case of the medium, there is a danger of his being so
influenced in this way that thereafter he may attract to himself a class
of undesirable spirit influences who would otherwise never have come
into his psychic aura or world. We call attention to the following
advice on this point given by an experienced mediumistic writer:


Detrimental Magnetic Influence.

"No sensible person should surrender himself to the magnetic influence
of a human being of whom he knew nothing; he should need to know and
have confidence in him before doing so; yet we find many who, impelled
by a desire to be a medium, without understanding how much the word
implies, sit down and invite any magnetizer who comes along to
experiment upon him. Under such circumstances, nothing but a high motive
and a pure purpose will protect them from the operations of unwise or
mischievous intelligences. As well might they go and sit in a public
place with their eyes blindfolded, and with an inscription on their
breasts, 'Who will come and magnetize me?' * * Mesmeric influence from
an experienced operator, for the purpose of inducing susceptibility, is
sometimes helpful to a sensitive. If the mesmerist can put you in the
trance condition and then hand you over to trustworthy spirits to
control you, well and good. In the same way, mesmeric passes may be
helpful in the liberation of your clairvoyant powers. The operator may
succeed in throwing you into the deep trance state, in which you may
travel or become clairvoyant, but we would not recommend you to submit
to mesmeric influence or hypnotic suggestions from anyone, unless you
know that he is experienced and a thoroughly honorable and trustworthy
individual. In circles for development one member is frequently
impressed, or controlled to make magnetic passes over another to aid in
his unfoldment; and if such a thing should happen to you, and the
influence is congenial, there need be no objection raised by you; but
beware of those people who claim to be able, by mesmerism, to develop
you into a medium in a given period of time."


Mediumistic Auto-Suggestion.

Other authorities have pointed out the fact that in some cases hypnotism
has resulted in a sort of pseudo-mediumship, or bogus mediumship, in
which the control is not that of a real spirit, but is merely the result
of the suggestion of the hypnotizer, or else the auto-suggestion of the
would-be medium himself. A writer on the subject has said of this: "In
too many cases, only the power of auto-hypnotism is manifested, and we
have obsession, fraud and folly as the result. There is one sure method
of detecting the auto-hypnotic trance, and showing the difference
between that and the genuine spirit trance. Any competent magnetist or
hypnotiser can throw off the spell in all cases of self-induced trance,
unless it has reached the condition of complete catalepsy. But if a
spirit has induced the trance and controls the medium, it will laugh at
the hypnotist's efforts to restore him to the ordinary condition. The
most unfortunate feature of this sorry business is that the poor subject
is self-deceived, and imagines that he is a full-fledged medium; and
when he has made some terrible break on the platform or elsewhere he
shields himself by laying all the responsibility upon some supposed
spirit guide."


"Psychic Sponges."

A writer has also called the attention of young mediums to another
undesirable class of psychic hangers-on at seances, as follows: "There
are some people who, when they sit in a circle, are extremely helpful,
and give off the right kind of force that readily blends with that of
the sensitive; but there are others who draw upon and appropriate the
psychic forces which are needed by the medium, or by the spirits through
the medium. While they mean well, enjoy the seances, and feel 'SO much
better' after them, the success of the circle is endangered so far as
the object for which it was formed is concerned. Such persons are
'psychic sponges,' and should be requested to sit outside the circle, or
be asked kindly to refrain from attending."


Investigate Your Spirits.

Finally, the young medium should understand the true nature of the
spirits, and just how far he may be safely guided by their advice and
wishes. The instructions given by an intelligent spirit of good
character may be safely followed as a rule, but the character and
general intelligence of a particular spirit must first be ascertained
through acquaintance with him. Until the character of a spirit has been
fully established, and his claim to intelligence well supported by his
messages, the medium will do well to rely on his or her own good
judgment and intuition. As a writer has well said: "The medium must keep
a level head and proceed cautiously. He should never allow any spirit,
in or out of the body, to usurp his right of private judgment or
exercise any undue authority over him. Eternal vigilance is the price
of liberty; you must use your own discretion and try the spirits before
you trust to them."


Spirits Are Still Human Beings.

Many persons seem to be under the impression that because a spirit
happens to have passed out of the body he will, of necessity, know the
truth about every subject in the range of human thought, and can make no
mistakes, and can always work miracles. But this is a grave mistake; it
should always be remembered that a decarnate spirit is as much a human
being as is an incarnate spirit such as yourself; and not any better or
worse, on the average, than yourself or other incarnate spirits. One
needs but to remember that all sorts and conditions of people are
constantly passing out on to the spirit plane, and that, at least for
some time, they continue to be practically the same kind of persons that
they were on the earth plane. This being so, it will be seen that it
would be very unwise to surrender oneself indiscriminately to each and
every kind of spirit who happens to manifest his presence at a seance.
Persons in the flesh should talk and reason with those out of the flesh
just as they would were the latter still on the earth-plane of life. A
writer well says: "In a developing circle many things can be tolerated,
because both sides are experimenting and 'feeling their way towards each
other,' and it is difficult at first to know just what is necessary or
possible. But it is a safe rule to follow for one to refuse to be
dictated to by the spirits and to decline to go on blindly."


Beware of Domineering Spirits.

A writer has given the following good advice to young mediums, which
such will do well to heed: "Do not always be ready to be controlled, or
to drop into a trance just because you 'feel the influence,' and 'a
spirit wants to say something,' or to oblige injudicious friends who
'wish you would let him come.' Many people are very inconsiderate, and
although they do not SAY so, they THINK (and the sensitive FEELS their
thought) 'I do wish he would go under control and tell me something.'
You should decline to be controlled EXCEPT at the times when you
voluntarily and with set purpose lay yourself open to the influence of
the spirits, in a properly constituted circle, or when you are prepared
for it. If the spirits cause you to do foolish or ridiculous things,
gently but firmly refuse to again submit. Do not be induced to yield by
promise of future greatness and success. Not a few people have had their
vanity tickled and their ambitions aroused by the flattery of crafty and
domineering spirits, and in consequence they have been misled into doing
and saying very absurd and foolish things."



PART X

EXPERIENCES IN THE CIRCLE


When a circle of sensitive people has been formed, and the necessary
preliminaries of the first sitting have been completed, it is not at all
infrequent that even at the first sitting there should be more or less
manifestation of spirit power. In many cases the sensitives among the
sitters begin to experience a peculiar sensation in their arms and
hands, the latter being placed on the table in front of them.


Signs of Spirit Presence.

There will be manifested in most cases a peculiar sense of heaviness or
weight in the hands on the table, and an impression that the hands are
being held to the table as if by glue or other adhesive material. In the
arms are manifested peculiar tingling, pricking sensations, or a
"needles and pins" feeling, something akin to a gentle current of
electricity passing along them. Sometimes there is experienced the
sensation of a gentle cool breeze passing over the sitters--particularly
over the backs of their hands. In other cases there may be a sense of
numbness or partial loss of sensation, something akin to that
experienced when a hand or arm "goes to sleep," as the popular phrase
expresses it. In other cases there is manifested a peculiar jerking,
twitching, or vibration of the hands and arms, sometimes extending to
the whole body of some of the sitters. Sometimes the hand of the medium
will begin to make motions as if he were trying to write, and a pencil
placed in his hands may trace crude figures or attempts at letters. At
this stage it will be found that the singing of hymns or similar music
will tend to have a quieting, soothing, harmonizing effect.


Spirit Rappings.

At the first sitting, or one shortly following after the first, it is
likely that raps will be produced, and communication established in this
way. In such case the leader of the circle (not the medium) should be
sure to inform the spirits just what communicating code is to be used in
the circle, so that there may be no misunderstanding concerning the
same. In such case he should address the spirits as if there were
several present, for such will most likely be the case. It must be
remembered, however, that the raps will not always come from the table.
They may also, for that matter, come from the wall, the ceiling, or from
some of the furniture in the room. The table raps come from the top of
the table or under the table. Sometimes they sound like ordinary raps,
and then again they may give forth a peculiar hollow sound which is
difficult to describe or to definitely locate. The appearance of these
raps give positive proof that the conditions are being established more
or less fully, and the success of the circle is almost sure to follow.


Table Tippings.

Sometimes, however, in place of the raps being manifested by the spirit
forces, there will instead be manifested that peculiar tipping of the
table which was the distinguishing characteristic of early
spiritualistic phenomena in the western countries. In this case the
tipping of the table will proceed just as in the case of the raps, so
far as the transmission of messages is concerned. That is to say, the
table will tilt three times, one time, etc., in accordance with the
code, just as in the case of communication by means of the raps. In
addition to this, however, the table may begin to manifest strange
motions; it may begin to raise itself, jump around, spin around on one
leg, slide across the rooms, etc. In such cases the hands of the sitters
should be kept on the table, or if they slip off they should be at once
replaced thereupon. Sometimes heavy tables will manifest more activity
than the lighter ones.


The Spirit Signals.

When these rappings or table-tiltings begin to be manifested, all in the
circle should keep cool and calm, and should refuse to become agitated
or excited. If the phenomena should be apparently meaningless and
disconnected, and resulting in no definite communication from the other
side, do not jump to the conclusion that the meaningless rapping or
senseless table tipping is the work of foolish spirits or flippant
decarnate entities. On the contrary, you must remember that not only is
your circle experimenting, but that the spirits on the other side are
also experimenting in hopes of securing proper conditions for
intelligent communications and definite messages. As we have said
before, the spirits have their own troubles, as well as the sitters, and
both sides are really engaged in an effort to "find each other." As a
writer has said: "Remember also that you are merely experimenting, and
that the spirit people are also, perhaps for the first time, trying to
penetrate the veil and utilize powers and agencies of which, in all
probability, they know as little as do you. So many disturbing factors
exist--weather, varying psychical conditions of the sitters, agitated
mental states, too great expectancy, or anxiety for successful
demonstrations--that the true disposition to be maintained by the
inquirer is that of the scientific student, who carefully watches what
transpires, and endeavors to discover the causes of failure as well as
the conditions which favor success."


Flashes of Communication.

In some cases the circle will have to sit several times before the
persistent though disconnected and apparently meaningless raps or
table-tilts will begin to show positive signs of intelligent signalling.
The same thing would probably occur were the inhabitants of the planet
Mars to find themselves able to flash signals to our earth--for a long
time the flashes would seem meaningless to us, until at last they would
seem to manifest a definite intelligent purpose and rhythm. When this
stage of the raps or table-tilts has been reached, then the leader of
the circle should acquaint the spirits with the code used, and ask
definite questions concerning the future conduct of the seance, the
answers to which the spirits are requested to give through the signal
code of raps or tilts. When these answers begin to "come through"
plainly and definitely, then the seance enters a new phase.


Spirit Code Signals.

In this new phase, when once entered into, the formal set procedure to
be followed will be about as follows: The leader of the circle,
recognizing the signs of the presence of spirits in the circle, will
address them and ask them whether or not there is a spirit present who
wishes to convey a message to the circle, or to any one present. Then
the spirits signal back in the affirmative or the negative. If the
answer be in the affirmative, the circle leader asks the spirits to
indicate by the affirmative signal when the name of the right person
present is named--and he then proceeds to slowly and plainly name each
person present, in succession, until the affirmative signal is received.
Or, he may ask the spirits to indicate the identity of the spirit
friends present, when their names are called; and he then proceeds to
call over the names of the departed friends of those present, as the
same are requested by the sitters or visitors to the circle. When the
right name is reached, the spirits signal in the affirmative, either by
raps of table-tilts, etc. After the question-and-answer line of
communication has been firmly and strongly established, more definite
information may be obtained by the instruction of the system of
"alphabet calling," as described in a preceding portion of this book.
In this system, the letters of the alphabet are slowly and clearly
called off, in succession, until the affirmative signal is given
regarding the letter just called, which indicates that that letter is to
be marked down as a part of the sentence. Wonderful messages have been
received in this way, although the process is very slow and somewhat
tedious in the case of long messages.


Ouija Boards.

Of late years the sitters at circles have found a quicker method of
obtaining "letter by letter" messages by means of the apparatus called
"the Ouija Board," which consists of a moving "Planchette" with an
indicator which moves over the letters marked on a board, the hands of
the sitters (or certain of their number) being placed on the table of
the "Planchette." The indicator moves over the line of letters, and
indicates the letters of the message, one by one. The Ouija Boards are
sold at a moderate price, and will be found a valuable adjunct to any
spiritualistic circle. During the past few years, public attention has
been strongly directed to this manner of obtaining spirit communications
by reason of newspaper notices concerning the same, and the fact that
several books have been written under spirit guidance imparted in this
particular way.


A Home-Made Ouija Board.

A writer has given the following directions for making a "home-made
Ouija Board," viz., "A Planchette may be used as an 'Ouija' by laying
down a sheet of paper upon which the letters of the alphabet have been
written or printed in a fairly large semi-circle, the words 'Yes' or
'No' being written at either end, and figures from 1 to 9 written
straight across a little lower down. Now remove the pencil and insert a
small moderately sharpened stick as a pointer, and the Planchette may
run about, point to letters or numbers, answers your questions at 'Yes'
or 'No,' or messages may be spelt out as you watch its movements."


Trance or Inspirational Mediumship.

Through the development and unfoldment afforded by the development
circle, the mediumistic persons in that circle, particularly the medium
who is "sitting for development" in the circle, will in all probability
develop that phase of mediumship caller "Trance Mediumship," or
"Inspirational Mediumship." Of this phase of mediumship a writer has
said: "This mental phase of mediumship involves the development of a
degree of impressibility which may range from the conscious reception of
suggestion, or impulses, or thoughts from other intelligences, to the
lucidity on the spiritual plane which is displayed by conscious
clear-seeing, or spirit-sight. The phenomena of super-sensuous reception
due to spirit influence are elicited in much the same way as a mesmerist
arouses the clairvoyant powers of his subject. The somnambulic sleep, or
trance, is induced in the subject whose voluntary powers are no longer
under his control, and the involuntary processes are well-nigh
suspended. In this state his spirit sometimes gains a larger degree of
freedom, and is able to perceive on the inner or spiritual plane.


Symptoms of Trance Condition.

"If you are likely to become a trance-speaking medium, you will probably
experience a sensation as a falling or dizziness, as if you were going
to faint; this may continue until you become entirely unconscious on the
external plane, and you will know no more until you regain your normal
condition, although, while under the influence of the operator, you may
have been speaking more or less coherently. He may not, at first, be
able to convey the exact impression he wishes to produce. His
'suggestion' is not strong enough to set your involuntary nerves
vibrating in just the way he desires; consequently his thought is not
transferred to you in a manner which insures faithful reproduction, and
you should not be disappointed because of such imperfect results at the
outset. If your mind is filled with the desire to succeed, you will
become too self-conscious, and will thus destroy the very condition upon
which success depends."


The Entranced State.

Another mediumistic writer says: "The entrancement usually takes place
all at once, and the entranced one passes into the realm of
communication with the spirits without much warning of any kind. When
the medium is entranced it is highly essential that there be no
commotion or fear expressed in thought or action in the circle. It must
be remembered that the welfare of the medium depends a great deal on the
conditions of the others present, and purity of thought and pleasant
expectation should be the first thing looked after when the entrancement
occurs. In passing into the trance, the medium usually grows very pale
and acts not unlike a person going into a faint. But he or she must be
allowed to pass behind the veil without any commotion. When the
entrancement is accomplished, the manifestations may take place in
different ways. There are, in fact, many forms of manifestation
belonging to this particular phase of mediumship, but they all come
under the general rule and conditions."


Trance Phenomena.

Another writer has said: "In entering the trance condition of
mediumship, you will probably become semi-conscious, or perhaps almost
completely unconscious. The influence will stimulate your breathing,
which will become rapid and irregular; your eyes will close and you will
be unable to open them, and your hands and body may twitch and jerk as
if you were being subjected to a series of galvanic shocks. The sitters
should keep calm and sympathetic, but they should check any tendency on
the part of the medium to undue noise, or violence, or absurdity. You
will be aware of what you are doing, but will be unable to fully
exercise the will to interfere or try to stop. You will most likely
become conscious of an impulse to do something, or to blurt out certain
words. If you resist, you will only make the task more difficult and
hinder the attainment of the end you have in view. Your best course is
to hold your judgment in suspense; so do not be hostile or critical, but
act out your impressions.


Entering the Trance.

"Let the influence have its course--say what you feel you MUST say, and
never mind about your own state of consciousness. You will be much more
likely to pass into the unconsciousness of the trance (if you desire to
do so) if you say, 'Now, spirit friend, I trust myself to you, and will
yield my body and brain to your control, for you to do the best you can
with and through me. I am willing to co-operate with you for the time
being, and trust you to do your utmost for the good of others.' It is
not necessary that you should be utterly unconscious, although you may
think it is, to prove that another intelligence is operating upon and
through you. The evidence of that fact will be displayed in the nature
of the message and the unusual ability displayed by you when under the
stimulating influence of the operator.


Advice to Trance Mediums.

"Most mediums find that their powers vary. Sometimes there seems to be a
high degree of lucidity. The impressions which they receive are clear
and strong; and the ideas seem to flow through them freely, and the
quality of the inspirations is exhilarating, and they feel strengthened
and uplifted. But there are other days when they feel very much alone.
The influence that affects them is weak; they get only hazy impressions,
and there is a woeful lack of ideas. It seems as if the heavens were
brass, or that they themselves were unresponsive. They know not why, but
whatever they can 'lay hold of' to speak, or whatever the spirit people
can project into their sphere seems forced and incomplete. If you should
ever have these experiences, turn your attention to something else. Do
not 'harp on one string' too much. Physical exercise, change of scene,
social company, and rest, will soon restore your tone and renew your
powers."


Speaking Mediumship.

In that form of Trance or Inspirational Mediumship generally known as
"Speaking Mediumship," the communicating spirit assumes partial or
complete control of the vocal organs of the medium, and the spirit then
directly addresses the circle or audience of listeners, just as he would
do were he, himself, actually in the flesh confronting them and using
his own vocal organs. In such addressing the spirit manifests many of
the characteristics which distinguished him during his earth life. The
medium's voice is changed, and his manner takes on a quite different
form, i.e., that of the spirit which he possessed in his own earth life.
In fact, in some cases, it has actually been observed that the very body
of the medium seemed to either shrink, or else enlarge, as if taking the
form of the etheric framework of the controlling spirit.


Public Speaking Under Control.

A writer gives the following advice concerning Speaking Mediumship:
"Should you be controlled to give public addresses, it will be best to
withhold the name of the spirit who prompts or controls your utterances.
Most intelligent spirits prefer to be known by their teachings, rather
than by the names they bore when on earth. If the addresses are eloquent
and beautiful, and the thoughts presented are good and true, they will
be acceptable on their own merits, and would not be one bit more
valuable because they were inspired by some well-known historical
persons. Whereas, if you announce the name of a spirit, your hearers may
consider that the address does not come up to the standard of the
ability displayed by that individual before he dies, and may discredit
and discard the good that they might otherwise have found in your
utterances."


Spirit Advice and Counsel.

If spirits voluntarily tender you their advice upon business matters,
especially if they are friends or relatives whom you know and trust, and
who, when here, were capable and experienced business people, you may
well give heed to their counsel, even though you may not feel it wise to
follow it; but do not make a practice of going to the spirits for
information concerning trade or finance. Why should you expect that wise
and enlightened spirits should concern themselves about stocks and
shares, commerce, or manufacturing? Probably they knew but little about
these things when they were here, and have no heed for such knowledge
over there; and it will be well for you to learn to live your own life,
do your business, and accept the ordinary duties and responsibilities
which naturally devolve upon you. Let mediumship be a PART of your
education and development, not the WHOLE.

Impersonating Manifestations.

It will often happen that some spirit will take control of the medium
for the purpose of communicating with a friend present in the circle or
AUDIENCE, and for the purpose of positively identifying himself to that
friend, he may deem it necessary to cause you to impersonate himself as
he was during his earth life. In such cases you will experience a
peculiar feeling of undergoing a complete transformation of personality,
and often a dual-personality for the time being. Another instance of
this kind is where a spirit wishing to communicate with friends, and
this being his first opportunity to manifest in the impersonating phase,
he may yield to that peculiar psychic law which seems to operate in the
direction of causing a spirit, manifesting for the first time, to enact
his dying experiences, and to manifest a pantomimic reproduction of his
last hours preceding death. In such cases, the medium reproduces, in a
most startlingly real manner, the movements, ways of breathing,
coughing, gestures, ejaculations, and may even go so far as to utter the
"last words" of the dying man whose spirit now controls the medium.
Every medium should be prepared for an experience of this kind, for it
will sometimes completely upset a medium unfamiliar with it, and not
knowing just what it all means.


Incidents of Impersonations.

In a case such as stated above, the medium will probably find himself
either partially or completely conscious of what is being said and done
by the spirit through his body or vocal organs. He will naturally strive
to escape the utterance of the strange cries, moans, vocal gasps and
efforts, and the dead cries and farewell words of the dying man or
woman. Some mediums have felt at such times as if they were losing their
reason, and they have struggled to throw off the spirit control and
influence in order to regain their mental balance. The best mediums
advise the young mediums to keep as cool, calm, and collected as
possible in such cases, and not to allow themselves to become
panic-stricken. A writer on the subject has said: "Trust to the
sincerity of the spirit and the good sense of the sitters, and throw off
your fear. Yield obedience to your control, and neither help nor hinder
it. Just do and say what you feel you HAVE to do or say, and leave the
results. You cannot, or should not, be held responsible for failure by
the sitters, if there is no recognition; and by responding and giving
free course to the suggestion, which reaches you as an impulse or mental
impression, greater success will follow, and the development you seek
will be promoted. If, however, you find that the impersonations are
untrue, and the sitters are unable to interpret or recognize what you do
or say after you have followed out your impressions a number of times,
then resist them with all your strength of will, and require from the
spirit the proof of his identity in some other way."


Incidents of Inspirational Mediumship.

Another writer speaking concerning inspirational mediumship, has said:
"In inspirational speaking it will be noted that the medium often gives
a really wonderful speech, although he may naturally be a very poor
conversationalist. These speeches are often preserved and some of them
form exceptionally interesting literature. These speeches are generally
given when the medium is seated, but sometimes he loses balance and
falls to the floor. Still, as long as the spirit control has anything to
say, he will say it through the vocal organs of the medium. But it must
always be borne in mind that a medium does not, as a general rule,
become an inspirational speaker all at once. There is a stage of
development through which he must pass in which the spirit control
assumes charge of the body of the medium, and this takes some time and
is usually accomplished in steps. First, the medium gives evidence of
inspirational speaking by uttering guttural sounds, and very often his
mouth merely moves without giving forth any sound whatever. Little by
little the control gains access to the inner atmosphere of the medium,
and when he has broken the final barriers, he can speak and act and
deliver what he has to say. But it must be remembered that the mind of
the medium is not to be left out of the question entirely. He is often
called upon to aid in the interpretation of the speeches the spirit
delivers, and these he may misinterpret and lend to them color of his
own mentality, without his conscious intention to do so, however."


Value of Identification.

In impersonation mediumship, however, no matter how interesting the
manifestation may be, it is of prime importance that the identity of the
spirit should be clearly established, providing that the spirit himself
claims positively to be some particular individual; this, of course,
does not apply to instances in which the spirit does not claim identity
with any particular departed person, and where the communications are
given anonymously. It is this feature of identification that renders
this phase of mediumship so valuable and important. A well-known
medium, in a trance state, once delivered the following message from a
spirit: "Impersonation mediumship is the most valuable that the world
can possibly have today. When by the aid of the impersonating medium,
the inquirer is enabled to converse with his beloved deceased friends,
and they make themselves actually visible in the personality of the
medium, plain to consciousness and understanding, and tell him
specifically points and facts of identity and experience that are
utterly beyond the power of any other intelligence to tell, then he has
something borne in upon him through the senses of sight, of hearing and
understanding that appeals to him. Therefore, the impersonating medium
is the most valuable medium you can present to inquirers." Another
mediumistic writer has said: "This kind of mediumship carries conviction
of the real presence of the so-called dead, and your aim should be to
get into communication with the intelligent operator at the other end of
the line, and elicit from him evidences of his identity and purpose.
Table movements, raps, materializations, writings, messages, or
controls, are of comparatively little value unless by their agency you
can secure proofs of the personal identity and survival after death of
your departed friends, or some indications of a rational purpose on the
part of the operator."


Fraudulent Claims of Identity.

We would be lacking in our sense of duty and obligation toward our
readers, however, were we to refrain from calling their attention to the
fact that positive and strict identification of the spirits, in cases
where identity is claimed, is a duty on the part of investigators,
particularly on the part of those who happen to be relatives or friends
of the deceased person whose presence and identity are being claimed by
the controlling spirit who is manifesting the impersonation. As we have
said, elsewhere, we must remember that there are all kinds of decarnate
spirits, just as there are all kinds of incarnate spirits; and that the
nature of a spirit is not greatly changed by passing out of the body.
Just as there are imposters on the earth plane, so are there imposters
on the spirit plane. And, accordingly, caution is to be exercised on
both planes. The following quotations from mediumistic writers will
serve to illustrate this point, and to show that the best mediumistic
authorities themselves insist upon this precaution being taken.


Guarding Against Fraudulent Spirits.

One writer says: "While most mediums seek for some guide or control of
prominence, it must not be always taken for granted that the controlling
spirit during a seance is always just what he claims to be. For
instance, a spirit control might give his name as Henry Clay, and he
might deliver a spirited talk or oration, which, however, would be
reeking with grammatical errors. Even though he insist that he is Henry
Clay, our reason will tell us that he is not what he pretends to be. The
change which we call death cannot lead all spirits to reform, and there
are many who, as in earth life, are unworthy of our association, and
should be gotten rid of as soon as they appear. When these fraudulent
spirits appear, the atmosphere of the circle should be made very sacred
and high in character. Evil spirits, and those of low characters,
cannot endure the presence of elevated and high thoughts, and by the
holding of thoughts of this character the circle can soon rid itself for
good of these troublesome entities--and it should do so without fail."


Spirit Jokers.

Another writer says, on this point: "That there are spirits who
sometimes impersonate, and seek to pass themselves off as friends of the
sitters, cannot be denied; in fact, we have had personal proof of the
same on several occasions. But these troublesome and vexatious visitors
invariably get 'bowled out' if the investigators are observant and
careful. In fact, such entities are neither as numerous, or as evilly
disposed, as many persons imagine them to be. There are spirits who
'play up to' the weaknesses and flatter the vanity of those to whom they
communicate. And it is equally true that there are spirits who give
glowing assurances of the good things that they will perform by-and-by,
and profess to be some of the 'great ones' of the past, is equally true.
It is a well-known saying that 'people love a lord,' and this amiable
weakness is fully realized by the jokers on the other side--but the
fault does not wholly rest with them! Their too confiding and credulous
mediums are too often in the main responsible for their own
mystification and misleading. They are often so anxious to be guided by
some 'eminent' person who will be to them an 'authority,' that they
practically invite spirit pretenders to fool them to the top of their
bent. This does not apply to all cases of real or supposed deception,
but it does cover a large proportion of such experiences. In many
instances there is an element of self-deception--or auto-suggestion--and
the 'wish becomes father to the thought,' and the sensitive medium's
unrestrained imaginative powers do the rest."


A Typical Case of Identification.

The following typical case of undoubted identification of a visiting
spirit is related by Smedley in his work concerning spiritualistic
experiences, and may be taken as a pattern to be followed by
investigators in demanding and obtaining proofs of identity in cases
where same is asserted. The medium in this case was a woman of high
standing in spiritualistic circles, and the seance took place in Mr.
Smedley's own home. The medium was at that time a perfect stranger to
the Smedley family, and to their little circle of invited friends. The
seance was opened by the singing of hymns, and before long the medium
went under control. Mr. Smedley says: "She passed under the control of
an intelligent being, opened her eyes, and manifested the greatest
amazement." He then relates the subsequent experience as follows:


Recalling Past Incidents.

"After looking around the room very deliberately at various objects,
then at one person after another, and fixing her eyes on my wife, she
ran across the room, and throwing her arms around my wife's neck, she
kissed her most affectionately, addressing her as 'My dear sister.'
After speaking with my wife in endearing terms, she came across the room
to me, and placing her right hand on my shoulder, said: 'Well, my dear
brother.' (This was exactly as a deceased sister of my wife had been in
the habit of doing.) 'How unspeakingly glad I am for such a privilege as
this! When we used to sit by the hearth at night, conversing on various
topics that used to interest us so much, we little expected we should
ever have such a privilege. You know we used to sit up at night
discussing theological questions till the embers in the grate died out,
and sometimes a chiding voice from upstairs cried out: "Alfred, Alfred,
do come to bed. Do you know what time it is? You know Charlotte is not
fit to sit up so late."' This was precisely what had taken place, the
exact words being used.


Identifying Property.

"She referred to a number of incidents known only to her and ourselves.
She asked for an album in which she had written the dedication, pointing
this out, and also various pieces of poetry she had written in it. She
asked for a hymn-book, and desired us to sing what had been her favorite
hymn, which at my request she instantly found. She next asked for a
Bible, and asked me to read her favorite Psalm. I requested her to find
it, although I knew well which it was. She turned to it instantly, and I
read: 'The Lord is my shepherd,' etc. When the Psalm was finished, the
medium stood transfigured before us; her countenance was radiant, and
her eyes bright with a heavenly light. Turning to my wife, she said:
'Sister, dear, by inviting strangers to your house tonight you have
entertained angels unawares!' After the meeting, the medium remarked:
'When under control I was strongly influenced to look around for a
picture, but could not find it. I do not know what it meant, but the
control was anxious to find a picture.' My wife replied: 'My sister
painted a picture of the Saviour bearing His cross, many years ago, and
it now hangs in our dining room.' The above incidents, combined with her
mannerisms, and bearing in mind that the medium was an entire stranger
to us, and uneducated, were sufficient evidence of the presence and
influence of her deceased sister to cause my wife to exclaim, 'OF A
TRUTH, THAT WAS MY SISTER CHARLOTTE!'"


Identifying Historical Personages.

Of course, a close, personal identification, similar to that stated in
the above recital, is impossible in cases when the spirit claims to be
some well-known historical personage. But in the last named class of
cases it will be found possible to ask questions concerning the life and
career of the supposed celebrity, and to form a general idea of the
correctness of the claim by the quality and general character of the
answers given. It will be found that genuine spirits are nearly always
anxious to definitely establish the truth of their claims to identity,
and will often go to great pains to do so. The character of the language
employed, the grammar followed, and the general evidence of the
intellectual capacity of the spirit, all these will be found useful in
testing cases of claimed identity; and no genuine spirit has any just
cause to object to such tests and questions, if made in the proper
scientific spirit, and with ordinary politeness. In short, treat the
spirit just as you would were he in the flesh, speaking to you over a
telephone, and endeavoring to establish his identity; this will always
be a safe and just rule to employ and follow.



PART XI

HIGHER SPIRIT MANIFESTATIONS


We frequently hear of, and witness manifestations of, what is called
"spirit psychometry," "spirit clairvoyance," and "spirit clairaudience."
In the earlier chapters of the present book we have spoken of the
psychic principles and laws underlying psychometry, clairvoyance, and
clairaudience. We have seen that all of these forms and phases of
psychic phenomena are capable of being produced independent of spirit
guidance, control, or influence. In fact, most of such manifestations
are so produced, even when they are considered to be phases of spirit
mediumship. But, outside of these manifestations, there are found cases
in which such phenomena are produced by the aid, influence, and
assistance, if not indeed the direct power of, the controlling spirits
of the medium.


Spirit Psychometry and Clairvoyance.

In those instances in which the controlling influence of such phenomena
is clearly that of disembodied spirits, we find two distinct classes of
the same, as follows: (1) cases in which the spirits aided in the
establishing of the psychic rapport, and thus rendered more efficient,
clear, and strong; (2) cases in which the spirits exerted their own
psychometric, clairvoyant or clairaudient power, and then communicated
the result through their mediums to the circle. In the first of above
classes, the psychic faculties of the medium really perform the work,
although greatly aided by the addition of the psychic power of the
spirit. In the second of the above classes, the work is performed solely
by the psychic powers of the spirits, and the medium acts merely as the
line of communication between spirit and the circle. It must be
remembered that the spirits who have passed out of the body are
possessed of the same order of psychic faculties as are those still in
the body, and that, likewise, on both planes there is a great variation
of the degree of such powers between different individuals.


Spirit Psychic Assistance.

From the above, it will be seen that a mediumistic person may practice
in psychometry, clairvoyance, and clairaudience, either with or without
the assistance of the spirits. In case the spirits are assisting in the
direction of performing the psychic work themselves, and then
communicating the result to the medium, the medium of course has but to
remain passive and receive the communication. In cases, however, in
which the spirits assist merely by strengthening the psychic power of
the medium by aiding in the production of the rapport conditions, or by
lending the psychic power to add to that of the medium, then the medium
has but to proceed just as we have pointed out in the earlier portions
of this book devoted to the subjects of psychometry, clairvoyance, etc.


Writing Mediumship.

In what is known as "writing mediumship" the medium's hand is controlled
by the spirit, and is caused to write messages to those present, or to
answer questions propounded by some of those present at the circle. In
some quarters such writing is called "automatic writing," but inasmuch
as this last term is also applied to cases in which the hand of the
person writes a message telepathed by a living person, it would seem
that the old term "writing mediumship" is still the best one to use in
the cases in which the spirit control is using the hand of the medium
for the purpose of communication. The following statements made by
different mediumistic writers on this particular subject will prove
interesting and instructive to the young mediums seeking development
along the lines of this special phase of mediumship.


Incidents of Writing Mediumship.

One writer says: "If the medium reaches the writing stage, he generally
passes into it in much the same manner that he does into the
inspirational speaking. That is, he becomes entranced, and in
entrancement of this kind he usually loses his conscious self, although
it is not essential that he should do so. He may remain partially
conscious, but he will be very pale and will have no control whatever
over the hand which does the writing. When the hand that writes is
generally the only part of him that becomes numb, one entire side may
become limp and inactive, and it is at this stage that a pencil must be
placed in his hand all ready for writing, and a large sheet of heavy
paper be put on the table before him. It is urged that the pencil be a
heavy one, and the paper tough and coarse, for the first writing of a
writing medium is not even a fair specimen of penmanship, being heavy
and very difficult to decipher. As his hand wanders here and there, his
body may sway and the pencil be brought in contact with the paper. When
he begins to write, the strokes are crude and jerky and uncertain. The
first notes that he delivers to the sitters are very often difficult to
make out, and sometimes it is impossible to tell what they are. But this
condition will be gradually overcome until the writing is very fair, and
finally it can be written on much finer paper and with an ordinary
pencil. When questions are to be asked, they may be put direct to the
medium, and the answers will be written out and signed by the spirit
sending them. As the medium develops, it will not be necessary for him
to have the questions put to him verbally. Write the questions on a
little slip of paper, and place these slips in his hands. The spirit
will read them, and then use his arm as before in writing out answers.
But this stage cannot be attained in a day or a week, and it is a sign
of the higher forms of development, and should be looked upon by the
members of the circle as evidence of the highest order establishing the
great success they have attained."


Developing Writing Mediumship.

Another writer on the subject of writing mediumship says to those
developing this phase of mediumship: "Your hands may be caused to shake
and move about as if you desired to write. You may be quite conscious,
or only semi-conscious, but you will feel that you are unable to prevent
the movements. In such a case, the sitters should provide pencil and
paper and await results. They should speak to the control and request
him to work quietly, and in all probability the rapid preliminary
scrawls will soon give place to slower and more legible writing. Many
persons have developed as writing mediums who have never sat in a
circle, and without being entranced. We should advise you, if you decide
to sit alone and make experiments in this direction, to avoid
excitement, expectancy, and preconceptions. Proceed as though you were
speaking to a visible friend, and request that someone will move your
hands to write. Provide yourself with a writing pad, or several sheets
of paper, and while holding a pencil in readiness, withdraw your
thoughts from your hand and arm, and assume a passive condition. If you
are strongly mediumistic, words and sentences may be written, but you
need hardly expect such results at first."


Stead's Method and Results.

W. T. Stead, the eminent English investigator, said: "I hold my pen in
the ordinary way, but when the writing is beginning I do not rest my
wrist or arm upon the paper, so as to avoid the friction, and to give
the influence, whatever it may be, more complete control of the pen. At
first, the pen is apt to wander into mere scrawling, but after a time it
writes legibly. Unlike many automatic writers who write as well
blindfolded as when they read what they write as they are writing it, I
can never write so well as when I see the words as they come. There is
danger in this, which is most clearly illustrated When my hand writes
verse--especially rhymed verse--for the last word in each line suggests
to my conscious mind a possible rhyme for the ending of the following
line; this rouses up my mind, my own ideas get mixed with those of the
communicating intelligence, and confusion is the result." The above
statement of Mr. Stead becomes doubly interesting and valuable when we
remember that through his hand, controlled by a spirit intelligence,
came that wonderful series of messages afterward published under the
title of "Letters from Julia," which book excited the attention and
interest of the civilized world at the time of its publication, and even
to this day enjoys a great popularity.


Automatic Writing vs. Inspirational Writing.

Another writer says: "Inspirational or impressional writing is
frequently mistaken for that which is more purely passive or automatic.
The medium or sensitive person experiences a strong impulse to write,
but does not receive any clear or consecutive train of thought. He sets
down one word, and then others follow as fast as he can indicate them,
but he must begin to write before the complete sentence is given to him.
In other cases, the thoughts flow into his consciousness faster than his
pen can record them; but in the truly 'automatic' form of communication
the mind of the sensitive is not consciously affected. He can read and
think about other and entirely different subjects, and need take no more
interest in the work than he would if his hand did not belong to him nor
than if a spirit laid hold of and guided the pencil. Some mediums who
write automatically have to be mentally quiet; they find that if the
mind is preoccupied the hand will not write, although, even in such
cases, it frequently happens that the amanuensis is ignorant of the
communication until he reads it afterwards."


Use and Abuse of Automatic Writing.

J. A. White, a trance and clairvoyant medium himself, says of the phase
of writing mediumship: "There is a great tendency, particularly in cases
of automatic writing, to do too much of it. No sooner do some people
find that the pencil will move, than they spend all their spare time in
this fascinating pursuit, which, in their undeveloped state, I believe
to be a dangerous and unwise practice. They are apt to exclaim, when any
question arises during the day: 'Let us see what the spirits have to
say.' This, carried to extremes, leads to one thing, and one thing
only--obsession. I believe in fixing a time, and, unless in exceptional
cases, refusing to sit at any other. Of course I am speaking of
mediumship when it is in its budding stage. A developed medium can judge
for himself, and knows from experience how far to go. It is a favorite
trick of a certain class of spirits when they find they have a sensitive
who can 'feel' them, to give them that pricking sensation in the arm
which denotes their presence. 'So-and-so wants to write,' and away
rushes the medium for the pencil, and sits down. This I do not believe
in. I have seen far more harm than good come from it. The proper way to
develop, in my opinion, is to sit at home in a small, carefully selected
circle, two or three times a week, at stated hours, and with a competent
conductor who knows what he is doing."


Advice to Writing Mediums.

A French medium says: "We urge beginners in their own interest not to
take up the pencil for automatic writing, or to sit at a table for
communications at any free moment, without rhyme or reason, for disorder
in experiment is one of the first and most serious dangers to be
avoided. An absolutely strict rule should be made not to attempt the
effort more than once every other day." Another writer says: "The
communications that are received by the various forms of passive,
impressional, automatic, and inspirational writing must not be regarded
as valuable merely because of the conditions under which they were
obtained, nor because of their spirit origin, real or supposed. Under
all circumstances receive with the utmost reserve and caution
long-winded communications from notable characters who claim to be
'Napoleon Bonaparte,' 'Lord Bacon,' 'Socrates,' or other great
personages; for in the majority of cases, the value of the communication
is exactly the reverse of the importance of the name attached. This
applies to automatic writings quite as much as to spoken messages. Judge
the statement made by the ordinary standards, apart from their claimed
exalted origin. If rational, beautiful, and spiritually helpful and
enlightening, they are worth having on their own merits; but if they
are unreasonable, wild or dogmatic, or pretentious and flattering, they
should be discarded; and, unless you change their character after
repeated experiments, your attention should be turned in some other
direction."


Drawing Mediumship.

What is known as "drawing mediumship" is but a variation of writing
mediumship, at least so far as is concerned the nature of the
manifestation. In both cases the spirit control moves the hand of the
medium, in one case forming letters and words, and in the other case
forming figures, designs, etc. In some rare instances, the spirit
control operating through the hand of the medium has produced crayon
drawings, water color sketches, and even oil paintings, although the
medium himself or herself, was unable to even draw a straight line, much
less to execute a finished drawing or painting. The principle governing
such mediumship, and the development, thereof, is precisely the same as
that governing the phase of writing mediumship previously described.


The Planchette.

From time to time, during the past fifty years, there have been invented
or arranged various forms of mechanical contrivances designed to assist
in the development of writing mediumship. The most popular of these has
been the Planchette, which has enjoyed great popularity for many years
past. The Planchette is a little heart-shaped board, having two legs,
with tiny wheels at the end, attached to the board. Near the pointed end
of the heart-shaped board is a hole, into which a pencil is inserted. A
sheet of paper of good size is spread upon a table, and the Planchette
is placed thereupon. Then the sitter, or two sitters, place their hand
or hands upon the board--generally resting only the tips of their
fingers lightly upon it. The sitter or sitters then await results.


How to Use the Planchette.

If the sitter is mediumistic the Planchette will begin to move about
slowly at first, gradually gathering force and definite direction. After
a few preliminary strokes, circles, or lines having been drawn, the
Planchette will seem to have been firmly taken hold of by some spirit
hand, and will begin to write words and sentences in a more or less
'scrawly' fashion. When the writing once begins, questions may be asked
of and answered by the spirits. Some persons report that to them the
Planchette seems to move by itself, pulling their hands with it; but
others report that they feel the movement of their arms and hands, as
the spirit propels the machine in the work of waiting. Some know what is
being written during the process, while others do not know what has been
written until they afterwards read it. Sometimes the writing begins Boon
after the sitting is commenced, while in other cases the sitters have to
wait a long time, or even to sit several times before the writing
actually begins. Sometimes the Planchette will refuse to write for
certain persons, but will write freely for others. The general advice is
to exercise patience in the Planchette sittings, and not to expect to
get the best results at once; and, particularly, not to begin asking
questions immediately after the writing begins.


Healing Mediumship.

Some mediums seem to be particularly adapted to the work of healing by
psychic force, and this phase of mediumship is known as "healing
mediumship." The healing medium is guided principally by the spirit
influence, so far as is concerned the choice of methods of procedure in
his healing work. The following directions, however, given by a
mediumistic writer, will give the young medium a very good, practical
general idea of the procedure to be followed in case his spirit control
does not indicate some other method. This writer says:


How to Heal by Spirit Power.

"If you are impressed with the idea that you possess healing power, you
can easily experiment upon your suffering friends or acquaintances. If
you are mediumistic, and spirits desire to develop you for the healing
work, you will readily feel that you are impressed what to do. Your
hands will be guided to the proper position, and you will spontaneously
make the requisite passes. Magnetic healing has really nothing to do
with massage, the induction of sleep, or with any form of mesmerism or
hypnotism. The healing medium should centre his thought and interest
solely and wholly with the idea of effecting a cure. He will need to be
sympathetic, but hopeful. Do not let your patient think about his
ailments, but arouse his thought and engage his attention upon some
outside subject. Make him feel comfortable, and lead him to expect good
results; to do this you must be affirmative and confident. Unless you
are impressed, or are controlled, to do otherwise, sit in front and take
hold of the hands of the sufferer for a time, then make gentle, short,
downward passes over the part affected, and conclude with long sweeping
passes from head to foot without contact. For local affections, point
your hands at or just touch the spot with your finger tips, or make
direct horizontal or slightly downward movements, as if you were
throwing something at him. A warm, comfortable room is favorable to
magnetizing, and a genial mental atmosphere, created by cheerful and
kindly minds in the operator and persons present, will contribute
largely to the success of the treatment. You will do well to act upon
your impressions and make the passes in whatever way you feel impelled
or compelled. If you operate under spirit guidance, you will be
impressed more or less clearly how to proceed in each case. In all
probability you may sympathetically 'take on,' and be affected by, the
symptoms of the disease from which the patient suffers, and in that way
be able to form an accurate diagnosis of the case; but you must guard
against exhaustion, and should always 'throw off' from yourself the
influence that you have received, and wash your hands thoroughly after
each treatment."


Materialization Mediumship.

One of the rarest, and at the same time the most eagerly sought after
phase of mediumship, is that known as "materialization mediumship." In
this phase of mediumship the decarnate spirit is able to draw upon the
vital forces of the medium, and those present at the seance, to such
effect that it may clothe itself with a tenuous, subtle form of matter,
and then exhibit itself to the sitters in the same form and appearance
that it had previously presented in its earth life. Many of the most
remarkable testimonies to the truth and validity of spiritualism have
been obtained through this phase of mediumship, and it is the aim of all
investigators to witness, and of most mediums to be the channel of the
production of, this remarkable phase of mediumistic phenomena.

In almost all instances of materialization phenomena in the record of
modern spiritualism we find that a cabinet was employed. There are two
main reasons advanced for the necessity of the cabinet in this phase of
mediumistic phenomena. The first of said reasons is that in many cases
darkness has been found necessary for the preliminary work of the
materialization, although absolute darkness is not necessary in the
general room in which the materialized spirit forms afterward appear.
The second of the said reasons is that there seems to be a psychic
atmosphere created by the blending of the spirit forces with those of
the medium, which atmosphere must be kept apart from and unmixed with
the auras of the members of the outside circle or the general visitors
at the seance.


Why the Cabinet Is Necessary.

Just what is the technical reason for this necessity is a source of
argument and dispute among the different authorities on the subject,
and it may be said that the matter is not as yet definitely settled. But
whatever may be such technical explanation, the fact remains that the
seclusion of the medium has been found almost absolutely necessary for
the production of the phenomena of spirit materialization. The few
exceptions noted in the history of modern spiritualism only go to
establish the general rule. For the purpose of a general study of the
subject, it may be accepted as a general fact that the production of
spirit materialization has as one of its necessary conditions the
presence and use of a dark cabinet in which the medium is secluded from
the circle or assemblage of persons attending the seance.


How to Make the Spirit Cabinet.

One of the best kind of cabinets for this purpose is a small alcove
room, or other small room adjoining the room in which the visitors sit
at the seance. A large closet will also answer the purpose very well, in
fact many mediums prefer the closet to any other form of cabinet. If
neither small room or closet is available, then it becomes necessary to
build or erect a cabinet for the medium. One of the simplest and least
expensive methods of building or erecting a cabinet for the medium is as
follows: Take a large piece of dark cloth, cotton or woolen, or else a
large shawl, and fasten it by stout twine or cord across a corner of the
room. It will be better if the curtain is made in two pieces, so as to
allow it to part in the middle for the purpose of the entry and exit of
the medium, and for the purpose of allowing the materialized spirit form
to show itself to the circle. It is not necessary that all light be
excluded from the cabinet, and therefore it need cause no worriment if a
little light filters in over the top of the curtain; but the lights in
the main room should be kept burning "dim and low," not only for the
purpose of aiding in the actual work or materialization, but also in
order to preserve the proper conditions when the materialized spirit
presents itself between the opened curtains.


How to Use the Spirit Cabinet.

When the cabinet is properly arranged the medium enters it and sits down
on a chair provided for that purpose. He should not be disturbed
thereafter, but should be encouraged and aided in his work by the
maintenance of a quite, reverent mental attitude on the part of the
members of the circle. It will be found helpful if a few hymns are sung
while waiting for manifestations from the cabinet. The best way to
encourage materialization at a regular circle is for gradual steps to be
taken leading up to this high phase of phenomena. For example, the
circle should sit in the ordinary way at its regular meetings, and
devote itself to the production of the lesser forms of phenomena. Then,
before adjournment, the medium may go into the cabinet while the circle
sits for materialization phenomena. This practice may be made to form a
regular part of the proceedings of the circle. But the circle must be
very patient concerning the production of this class of phenomena, for
the necessary conditions are very difficult to develop, even when aided
by the most powerful spirits. Many sittings may be required before even
the slightest sign of materialization is obtained--but the final result
will repay much waiting and watching, much patience and much
perseverance. But sooner or later the phenomena will come if the proper
conditions are provided for them.


Spirit Phosphorescence.

The first evidence of the presence and activity of the spirit forces
striving to produce the phenomena and materialization will probably be
the appearance of peculiar hazy phosphorescent lights playing in front
of the curtain forming the front of the cabinet. These lights will
consist of small globules or balls of phosphorescent light that will
dance about, like the familiar will-o'-the-wisp seen over swamps and in
damp, woody places. These lights will flit here and there, will
alternately appear and disappear. Sometimes they will appear as if a
multitude of fire-flies were clustered in front of the curtain. When
these fire balls appear the circle may know that it is well on the way
to perfect materializations.


Appearance of Materialized Substance.

As the power increases, and the conditions become stabilized and
perfected, the manifestations will become more pronounced. It often
happens that cloudy nebulous bodies of psychic substance are formed and
float around in front of the cabinet, like clouds of steam or vapor
illumined by a dim phosphorescent light. Sometimes attempts will seem to
have been made to form these clouds into the semblance of the human
body, and often these bodies are more or less incomplete, as for
instance the arms may be missing, or else there may be dark holes where
the eyes, nose, and mouth should be. It may be stated here that the
sitters should not be frightened by these sights, nor should mental
agitation be permitted to manifest too strongly, as such conditions act
to retard further developments. Sometimes perfect hands and arms
materialize, but apparently not attached to a body. These hands may
float out over the circle, and may touch the members thereof. In rare
cases these hands take articles handed them by members of the circle,
which articles are then "dematerialized" and vanish from sight,
afterward appearing in other parts of the house. Large articles of
furniture have been known to be dematerialized in this way.


Materialized Spirit Forms.

Later on, the nebulous spirit forms will take on more definite lines and
form, and will become more plainly visible, and will also assume a far
more "solid" appearance. When the phenomena reaches its highest phases,
the materialized spirit forms can be plainly seen and actually
recognized by their friends in earth life. In some cases they will
actually leave the front of the curtain and will walk down among the
sitters, shaking hands with them, touching them on the cheek, or even
embracing some loved one. In rare cases these materialized forms are
able to converse with the sitters in the circle, just as plainly as when
in earth life.


Scientific Proof of Materialization.

It is not the purpose of this book to prove the existence of mediumistic
phenomena--rather it points out the means and methods whereby the
student may obtain such proof for himself or herself. But it may be
suggested here that the sceptic may find an abundance of proof of the
genuineness of materialization phenomena in the records and reports made
by eminent scientists, statesmen, and others. Particularly, the report
of Sir William Crookes, the eminent English scientist, will furnish such
proof to the inquirer who demands "scientific proof" before he will
believe anything out of the usual. Sir William Crookes has given
convincing evidence of the genuineness of spirit materialization, even
going so far to offer records of the weight of materialized spirits, and
their photographs taken by him--in some instances the photographs
showing the forms of both medium and spirit materialization.


How to Conduct a Materializing Seance.

In sitting for materialization, the circle should maintain the same
general demeanor that it observes at other times. Silence or dignified
conversation may be indulged in, but joking or levity should be
forbidden. Hands should be held, and reverent singing indulged in. It
should be remembered that this phase of mediumistic phenomena is not
something apart and distinct from the lesser phases which have been
described in detail in this book. On the contrary, it is simply a matter
of degree, and the same general principles underlie all phases of
mediumistic phenomena. Therefore, it is not necessary to repeat the
instructions regarding the conduct of the circle, or the rules for the
development of the medium. Read the earlier chapters for the same, which
are equally applicable in this place as in the places in which they
originally appeared.


Trumpet Mediumship.

In what is known as "trumpet mediumship," the sound of the voice of the
communicating spirit is increased in power by the use of a trumpet
shaped arrangement of paper, card-board, tin, or aluminum. There is no
particular virtue in the material used, and anyone may make a
serviceable trumpet out of heavy paper or thin card-board. The principle
of the use of the "spirit trumpet" is precisely that of the well-known
megaphone, i.e., it MAGNIFIES the sound, and increases its carrying
power. A spirit speaking in the faintest whisper through the trumpet is
enabled to have its voice heard plainly by those present in the circle,
where otherwise nothing would be heard. Often the spirit force is so
strong that it will pick up the trumpet and carry it around the circle,
tapping the various members thereof, and whispering through it into the
ear of some particular members. Weak spirits, therefore, who are unable
to make themselves heard in the ordinary way, often employ the trumpet
with effect in seances. When the trumpet is used, it should be placed on
the table, awaiting the use of the spirits.


Spirit Playing on Musical Instruments, Etc.

The spirit forces also sometimes will see fit to play upon musical
instruments placed in the cabinet with the medium, the guitar, mandolin,
concertina, accordion, etc., being the instruments preferred in such
cases. Of course the sceptics will claim that the medium may play the
instruments himself or herself, and thus give ground for the claim of
fraud; consequently in the case of public seances, and many private
ones as well, the medium will insist upon having his or her hands tied,
and other precautions taken to eliminate the possibility of fraud and
deception. Such precautions are in no way a reflection upon the medium,
and are, in fact, demanded by many mediums as a matter of self-respect,
self-protection, and the cause of truth. In many cases in which the
mediums were entirely lacking in musical education, knowledge, or
training, the spirits have performed skilled selections of music upon
the instruments in the cabinet.


Independent Slate Writing.

What is generally known as "independent slate writing" is a very
interesting phase of mediumship, and one of the peculiarities thereof is
that such phenomena is sometimes produced through mediums who seem to
possess little or no mediumistic powers in other directions. In
independent slate writing there is no employment of the hands of the
medium by the spirit to form the letters, words, and sentences of the
communication. On the contrary, the writing is done directly by the
spirit forces, independent of the organism of the medium. Of course the
psychic power of the medium and his vital energy as well is drawn upon
by the spirits in producing this form of manifestation, but the medium
is sometimes seated out of reach of the slates and in no case actually
touches the pencil.


The Slate Writing Circle.

Independent slate writing is performed as follows: The circle selects
two common slates, or else one folding slate. A small bit of chalk, or a
tiny piece of slate pencil is placed between the two slates, the latter
being then placed tightly together, and then bound with thick, strong
twine--in some cases the ends of the twine are fastened with sealing
wax. This trying and sealing is for the purpose of eliminating the
suspicion of fraud or deceit, and for the purpose of scientifically
establishing the genuineness of the phenomena. The bound slates are then
placed on the table in the middle of the circle. In some cases the
medium rests his hands on the slate, and in other cases he keeps his
hands entirely away from them--the phenomena itself evidently being
produced with equal facility in either case. A written question may
either be placed inside the slate on a small bit of paper, or else
sealed and placed on top of the tied slates. In some cases the
scratching sound of the pencil may be heard proceeding from the tied
slates, while on others no sound is heard while the writing is being
done. When the slates are opened, at the end of the seance, the slates
will be found to contain writing--the answer to the question, or else a
general message to the circle--the writing sometimes consisting of but a
word or two, while in other cases both of the inside surfaces of the
slate will be found to be covered with writing. It often requires quite
a number of sittings before this phase of phenomena is secured; in many
cases it is never actually secured in a satisfactory form.


Spirit Paintings.

There are cases of record in which crayon drawings have been produced on
the slates by enclosing small bits of various colored crayons therein
when the slates are tied together. Again, oil paintings have been
secured on the slates, after small dabs of oil paint of various colors
have been placed on the inside surface of the slates, a little linseed
oil being poured on each.


Fraudulent Slate Writing.

Slate phenomena has been brought into some degree of discredit and
disrepute during the past ten years or more, by reason of the fact that
a number of unscrupulous "fakers," or bogus-mediums, employed a system
where this class of phenomena was counterfeited by trick methods. But,
as all careful investigators of mediumistic phenomena well know, some
wonderful results are still obtained, quietly and without publicity or
notoriety, in many family or private circles. In this case, and in many
others, the very best mediumistic phenomena is often produced in those
family or private circles, where mutual sympathy, harmony, and spiritual
understanding prevail, and where there is an absence of the sceptical,
cavilling, negative mental attitudes, which tend to interfere with the
free flow of spirit power and the degree of manifestation. The tiny
flame burning on the family altars and in the private shrines serve to
keep alive the Light of the Spirit, which is too often dimmed by the
public glare of counterfeit and sensational exhibitions of so-called
spirit power.


Practical Advice to Developing Mediums.

The young developing medium who has read the foregoing pages of this
book will in all probability soon discover just what phase of mediumship
is best suited for his natural powers, temperament and psychic
constitution. As his innate psychic powers unfold and develop he will be
almost instinctively led in the particular directions in which these
powers may find the opportunity for the best form of expression and
manifestation. And, at the same time, the spirit friends which the young
medium will have drawn to himself will have discovered, by means of
experimentation, just what phase of mediumship the young medium would
best develop in order to convey the messages and communications from the
spirit side of life. The following bits of advice from mediumistic
writers of good standing will, however, perhaps serve to make the path
clearer for the young medium who is reaching out toward the best and
most efficient form of manifestation of the powers which he has found
are within himself.


Need of Special Development.

A writer says: "As a general rule, the best results of mediumship are
secured by special development along the lines of natural aptitude. A
'Jack of all trades is master of none,' and such a one is a failure in
mediumship as in anything else. You may find it helpful to visit a
public medium who is already developed, and who can examine you and give
you insight into your natural psychic powers, and counsel you regarding
your qualifications and aptitudes, and tell you what to do. But do not
attach too much importance to directions received in that way, because
so much depends upon the knowledge and power of the operator. One spirit
might use you with success in one direction, and another in some other
phase; just as one mesmerist may make a subject clairvoyant when
another has previously attempted to do so and failed. Nothing but actual
experience will settle that point. If, however, after a reasonable
amount of patient devotion to the experiment you do not succeed, or are
disappointed with what has been done, it will be advisable to effect a
change in the conditions. A dissatisfied state of mind is a dangerous
one. You may, if you choose, sit by yourself, and try to obtain table
movements, or to get 'automatic' or passive writing. You can make
experiments in psychometry or try crystal gazing, or endeavor to
visualize and to become clairaudient, but we should not advise you to
sit alone and invite spirits to put you into the trance. It is better to
join some good private circle."


Advice to Discouraged Mediums.

A writer gives the following excellent advice to young mediums who have
become somewhat discouraged at their lack of success, and slowness of
progress: "You have been already informed that you are a medium, and
that if you sit you will develop special gifts. But you may say: 'I have
sat, and have not developed as I was assured I should.' That is quite
probable. The medium whom you consulted may have misjudged your
capabilities; the spirit may have estimated what he could have done with
or through you, and, from his point of view, may have been perfectly
accurate; but possibly the spirits who have endeavored to develop you
were unable to succeed. People often say: 'I have been told many times
that I should make a good medium, but I have not had satisfactory
results.' When we hear such statements we are prompt to ask: 'Have you
sat for development for any length of time in a harmonious and congenial
circle? You cannot expect growth unless you give the requisite
conditions. You might as well anticipate a harvest without sowing the
seed--just because you bought a sack of wheat! The marvelous results
achieved by expert acrobats and athletes are due to their indomitable
determination to succeed, and their steady and continuous training of
eye, and muscle, and nerve. They concentrate their attention and focus
all their powers, and are at once temperate, patient, and persevering in
their experiments. The same spirit of devotion; the same firm attitude
and watchful attention to all the details; and the same observance of
the conditions, physical, mental, moral, and spiritual, are needed if
you would educate yourself and become a fit and serviceable instrument
for exalted spirit intelligence to afford humanity the benefit of their
experiences "over there."'"


Avoid Cross-Magnetism.

A popular mediumistic writer has given the following excellent words of
warning to young mediums: "Do not go into public promiscuous 'developing
circles.' There is always a danger of 'cross magnetism' and disorderly
manifestations in such gatherings. Owing to the mixed and inharmonious
mental, moral, and physical conditions which necessarily exist where a
number of strangers and curiosity seekers are attracted, you run the
risk of being affected by undeveloped, unprincipled, frivolous,
mercenary, self-assertive, or even immoral spirits, who, being attracted
to such assemblies, seek to influence incautious and susceptible people
who ignorantly render themselves liable to their control. The people
'on the other side' are human beings of all grades; they are not morally
purified by passing through the death-change; and as we are constantly
sending into their other state 'all sorts and conditions of people,' you
need not be at all surprised if you get into intercourse with the vain
and foolish, the unreliable and pretentious, or the selfish and sinful,
if you indiscriminately open the doors of your psychic self and give a
free invitation to any spirit 'passer by.'"


Avoid Psychic Absorption.

"You can waste your time, and you can sit in circles, absorb all kinds
of psychological influences, exhaust your own, and in many cases become
so filled up with contending influences that you are in a state of
psychological fever all the time, or so exhaust yourself that you will
become as limp and useless as a rag. This is not the way to use the
opportunities you have; and you should avoid the injudicious,
promiscuous, and insane methods of development of many who are extremely
anxious to develop you as a medium, and who often bring discredit upon
the subject of mediumship, and do no one the slightest practical
good--not even themselves. We admit that the motives of those who
conduct public promiscuous developing circles are good in most cases,
but their methods are frequently 'injudicious'--to put it mildly. Under
ordinary circumstances, your own pure purpose and the spirits who are in
sympathy with your exalted desires and intentions, are sufficient
safeguards against the intrusion of low, mischievous or malicious
spirits, but you should not venture into conditions which require the
trained and disciplined will, and the influence of wise and powerful
spirits to protect you against danger, until you have acquired the
ability to render yourself positive to the psychic spheres of
undesirable people, both in or out of the physical body, and can
voluntarily become passive and responsive to the true and trustworthy
friends whom you know and love."


The Stewardship of Great Powers.

We can not hope to more fitly close this book devoted to the brief
presentation of the facts of the psychic world, and the world of spirit,
than by quoting the following words uttered by a faithful laborer in the
vineyard of spiritualism: "Spiritualism helps us to understand the
'unity of spirit' and 'the brotherhood of man' in the divine
relationship wherein the greatest among us is the servant of all. The
possession of great gifts is an added responsibility. We are only
stewards of our powers on behalf or others, and our desire to gain
knowledge and influence should be vitalized and dignified by the
intention to use them to help, teach, and serve our fellows, and in such
service we shall ourselves be blest."

FINIS.

  +--------------------------------------------------------------+
  | Transcriber's Notes:                                         |
  |                                                              |
  | Page 3: Interpretating amended to Interpenetrating;          |
  | Tranformation amended to Transformation. "Unchartered        |
  | Seas" _sic_                                                  |
  | Page 4: Varities amended to Varieties                        |
  | Page 5: Full stop added after VII; Temperment amended to     |
  | Temperament; It amended to Is                                |
  | Page 6: Phosphoresece amended to Phosphorescence             |
  | Page 7: preceived amended to perceived                       |
  | Page 9: "Subnormal" _sic_; Byond amended to Beyond;          |
  | opening quote marks added to "supernormal"                   |
  | Page 19: "subdivisions, and sub-divisions" _sic_             |
  | Page 20: occulists amended to occultists; terrestial         |
  | amended to terrestrial. Missing closing quotes for           |
  | quotation addedafter 'radiant energy.' "Several great        |
  | class" _sic_                                                 |
  | Page 23: Kellar amended to Keller; duplicate "have"          |
  | removed                                                      |
  | Page 24: Kellar amended to Keller                            |
  | Page 28: interpretating amended to interpreting; pagaent     |
  | amended to pageant                                           |
  | Page 29: preception amended to perception                    |
  | Page 30: duplicate word "of" removed                         |
  | Page 34: One instance of Ochorowicz, one instance of         |
  | Ochoriwicz. Left as is                                       |
  | Page 37: second comma in 400,000,000,000,000 removed;        |
  | beyound amended to beyond; tremblngs amended to              |
  | tremblings; eough amended to enough                          |
  | Page 40: wthout amended to without; phenoment amended        |
  | to phenomena                                                 |
  | Page 41: Roetgen amended to Roentgen                         |
  | Page 42: senes amended to senses                             |
  | Page 45: duplicate line of text removed                      |
  | Page 50: menium amended to medium                            |
  | Page 51: transfrence amended to transference                 |
  | Page 54: thought-wives amended to thought-waves              |
  | Page 57: coldenss amended to coldness                        |
  | Page 61: pheonmena amended to phenomena; beenficial          |
  | amended to beneficial                                        |
  | Page 63: a amended to at                                     |
  | Page 66: resistence amended to resistance                    |
  | Page 68: implicity amended to implicitly                     |
  | Page 84: infinitessimal amended to infinitesimal             |
  | Page 85: antedeluvian amended to antediluvian                |
  | Page 92: Certain amended to Certainly; ont amended to not    |
  | Page 94: mainfested amended to manifested                    |
  | Page 99: Symbollic amended to Symbolic; symbollically        |
  | amended to symbolically; sudent amended to student           |
  | Page 101: rendiiton amended to rendition                     |
  | Page 103: self-stupefication _sic_                           |
  | Page 105: very amended to vary                               |
  | Page 109: occultist amended to occultists                    |
  | Page 120: "There is ... many degrees" _sic_                  |
  | Page 123: unforseen amended to unforeseen                    |
  | Page 126: Section heading Absolute Time relocated from       |
  | middle of paragraph; unescapable _sic_                       |
  | Page 135: being amended to beings                            |
  | Page 136: Spritualism amended to Spiritualism                |
  | Page 137: enlighted amended to enlightened                   |
  | Page 138: adherance amended to adherence                     |
  | Page 145: perseverence amended to perseverance;              |
  | unconciously amended to unconsciously                        |
  | Page 155: occulists amended to occultists                    |
  | Page 160: produtcion amended to production                   |
  | Page 170: genearly amended to generally                      |
  | Page 174: Missing full stop added                            |
  | Page 174: fundmental amended to fundamental                  |
  | Page 182: "Materializations follows" _sic_                   |
  | Page 185: parthway amended to pathway                        |
  | Page 186: "modus operana" _sic_                              |
  | Page 187: apostrophe added to others                         |
  | Page 190: "personal composition" _sic_                       |
  | Page 203: uninterupted amended to uninterrupted;             |
  | Psyschic amended to Psychic                                  |
  | Page 210: meduim amended to medium; coures amended to        |
  | course                                                       |
  | Page 213: "finnicky" and "finnickiness" _sic_                |
  | Page 215: senuous amended to sensuous                        |
  | Page 219: healings amended to healing                        |
  | Page 223: phychic amended to psychic; "subject is"           |
  | amended to "subject if"                                      |
  | Page 225: comma after auto replaced with hyphen              |
  | Page 232: showe amended to show                              |
  | Page 235: super-senous amended to super-sensuous             |
  | Page 236: Condtiion amended to Condition                     |
  | Page 243: himeslf amended to himself                         |
  | Page 249: how amended to now                                 |
  | Page 252: "clear and," amended to "clear, and"               |
  | Page 256: indicte amended to indicate                        |
  | Page 260: showly amended to slowly                           |
  | Page 265: materilaization amended to materialization         |
  | Page 267: mediumsistic amended to mediumistic                |
  | Page 268: phemonea amended to phenomena                      |
  | Page 269: accordian amended to accordion                     |
  | Page 270: State amended to Slate                             |
  | Page 276: ignoranty amended to ignorantly                    |
  |                                                              |
  | Small inconsistencies between the Table of Contents and      |
  | the section titles, such as spelling, capitalization and     |
  | hyphenation have been retained. In addition to these the     |
  | following discrepancies are here noted, but have been        |
  | retained:                                                    |
  | Page 3     Part I      In the Table of Contents              |
  |                        Super-sensible Vibrations should      |
  |                        be followed by The Higher Vibrations. |
  |                        The Higher Senses of Man is The       |
  |                        Higher Senses of Men on page 21.      |
  |                        In the Table of Contents Discovery    |
  |                        of New Worlds should be followed by   |
  |                        Transcendental Senses.                |
  |            Part III    The Categories of Thought is titled   |
  |                        The Contagion of Thought on page 56.  |
  | Page 4                 In the Table of Contents Repelling    |
  |                        Adverse Influences should be followed |
  |                        by Neutralizing Psychic Influences.   |
  |            Part IV     Classification of Clairvoyant         |
  |                        Phenomena is Classification According |
  |                        to General Distinctions on page 81.   |
  |            Part V      In the Table of Contents Absolute     |
  |                        Time should be followed by:  The      |
  |                        Occult Hypothesis. "The Prophecy of   |
  |                        Cazotte." The Dinner of the Elect.    |
  |                        The Illuminatus. The Beginning of the |
  |                        Prophecy. The Shadow of the           |
  |                        Guillotine. The Fall of the Great.    |
  |                        The Fate of Royalty. The Fulfillment  |
  |                        of the Prophecy. Other Historical     |
  |                        Instances. The Eternal Verities.      |
  | Page 5     Part VII    Spirit Impersonation is titled Spirit |
  |                        Inspiration on page 165.              |
  |                        Inspirational Speaking is titled      |
  |                        Inspirational Writing on page 168.    |
  |            Part VIII   In the Table of Contents The Jacob's  |
  |                        Ladder of Communion should be         |
  |                        followed by The Attainment of         |
  |                        Excellence.                           |
  | Page 6     Part IX     Difficulties Among Spirits is         |
  |                        Differences Among Spirits on page     |
  |                        215. In the Table of Contents         |
  |                        Self-Protection for Mediums should be |
  |                        followed by: Danger in Indiscriminate |
  |                        Magnetizing. Detrimental Magnetic     |
  |                        Influence. Mediumistic                |
  |                        Auto-Suggestion. "Psychic Sponges."   |
  |                        Investigate Your Spirits. Spirits Are |
  |                        Still Human Beings. Beware of         |
  |                        Domineering Spirits.                  |
  |             Part X     Impersonating Manifestations does not |
  |                        appear in the text.                   |
  |             Part XI    In the Table of Contents Spirit       |
  |                        Paintings should be followed by:      |
  |                        Fraudulent Slate Writing.             |
  |                        Practical Advice to Developing        |
  |                        Mediums should be followed by: Need   |
  |                        of Special Development. Advice to     |
  |                        Discouraged Mediums. Avoid            |
  |                        Cross-Magnetism. Avoid Psychic        |
  |                        Absorption. The Stewardship of Great  |
  |                        Powers.                               |
  |                                                              |
  | Section titles sometimes end with a full stop, and other     |
  | times not: left as is.                                       |
  |                                                              |
  | Quotation marks and hyphenation have generally been          |
  | standardised. Where a word occurs an equal number of times   |
  | as hyphenated and unhyphenated, both forms have been         |
  | retained. Where two spellings of a word have been used (for  |
  | example, magnetiser/magnetizer; skeptic/sceptic) both have   |
  | been retained.                                               |
  +--------------------------------------------------------------+





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