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are not entirely ignorant of its true source, is apparent. It is a part of esoteric Romanism.
These remarks are not made in any spirit of censure; for if the Church has ever done one thing more praiseworthy than another, it was when it inhibited the production of spiritistic phenomena by the common people. No matter what secret motives may have actuated the priesthood in confining the production of psychic phenomena to that order, the fact remains that if the common people had not been prohibited from the indiscriminate production of psychic phenomena, it would have utterly demoralized the Christian Church, and rendered it a very cesspool of vice and immorality. No one who has investigated the subject needs to be told how demoralizing to soul and body is the production of spiritistic phenomena, even in this enlightened age, especially where the medium is ignorant of its true source, and ascribes it to supermundane agency. How much more terrible would have been the results in an age of universal ignorance and superstition, can only be conjectured. In the early days of the Christian Church learning was confined largely to the priesthood; and it is doubtless true that they early discovered the vicious tendency of such practices, and felt compelled to interfere, in the interest of morality, and to prohibit the indiscriminate production of psychic phenomena by the ignorant laity. It is also doubtless true, as before remarked, that the priesthood understood something of the true nature of psychic phenomena; and that they should employ it occasionally for the promotion of the interests of their order, was inevitable. The people of their day were seeking for "signs and wonders" as they were in the days of Jesus, and the priesthood had before them the example of the Master in withholding from the laity the esoteric knowledge which they were prepared neither to receive nor to appreciate.
Thus it appears manifest, not only that it was through psychic phenomena that the Christian religion was evolved, but that it was largely through psychic phenomena that the Christian Church was enabled to establish itself on a firm basis within the three hundred years succeeding the crucifixion of its founder. It matters not that these psychic phenomena were misunderstood; nor is it any discredit to Christianity that in an age of intellectual darkness, before science threw its first glimmering rays of light upon the intellectual horizon, the Christian religion was thus promoted. Jesus did not misunderstand the phenomena of the soul, nor is he to blame because his followers mistook the import of phenomena which he did not produce and to which he did not give his sanction. As well might we discredit astronomy because it had its origin in astrology, or chemistry because it was preceded by alchemy, or impugn the wisdom of the Almighty because the Psalmist was ignorant of the Copernican system when he exclaimed, "The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament showeth his handiwork." The grand procession of the planets around the sun constitutes the phenomena of the solar system. These phenomena are the facts of astronomy; and they are none the less so because they have been misunderstood. They were observed and studied alike by the ignorant and the wise until the truth was evolved. The Psalmist doubtless regarded the earth as the centre of the universe; but the discoveries of Kepler and of Newton have neither diminished the force nor discredited the truth of the sublime words of the sweet singer of Israel.
In like manner psychic phenomena - the facts of the science of the soul-have been observed from time immemorial, and must still continue to be observed and studied until the true science of the soul is evolved. When this is accomplished, it will be found that the truths of
DEMONSTRATION OF THE FUTUre life.
Christianity will be none the less clearly recognizable because psychic phenomena have been, in times past, most grossly misinterpreted. On the contrary, as every truth illuminates every other truth to which it is related, the truths which Jesus taught must find a new illustration in every fresh discovery in the science of the soul.
MODERN PSYCHIC PHENOMENA.
Mesmerism.-Telepathy demonstrated by the Followers of Mesmer. -Braid's Discovery. - Hypnotism. - Discovery of the Law of Suggestion. Clairvoyance. — The Rochester Knockings. — Mesmeric Subjects and Mediums. — Spiritism as a Step in the Process of Evolution. - Its Effect.
E now approach an epoch in the history of psychic phenomena of the most transcendent interest and imminent importance. Hitherto we have dealt with phenomena so obscured by the twilight of tradition and imperfect history that only the faint outlines or the most salient features have been discernible. We shall, however, be compensated for this lack of clearness in the ancient phenomena by turning upon it the calcium light of modern experience; for we now enter the domain of demonstrable facts which have been incorporated into the great body of modern science; namely, the scientifically verified facts of experimental psychology.
When Anton Mesmer first demonstrated to the world that by certain mysterious manipulations persons can be thrown into a condition of trance, during which the objective senses are held in more or less complete abeyance, and that at the same time the functions of the body can be modified, pain suppressed, fever calmed, and disease removed, he laid the foundation of the true science of the human soul. Not that he obtained more than a glimpse into the promised land, or that he had the remotest idea of the grand results
which were to follow; but he was the first, in modern times, to point out one mean through which the soul can be experimentally studied. For him the only field of usefulness for the newly discovered power was that of therapeutics; and it was not till he had been driven by professional jealousy into dishonored exile that his followers so far extended his discoveries as to open the way for the study of the whole field of experimental psychology. The Marquis de Puységur, a philanthropist, a scientist, and a man of fearless integrity, in utter disregard of the sentence of professional and social ostracism pronounced by the medical profession of his day upon all who presumed to investigate the subject of mesmerism, extended the experiments of Mesmer, and was the first to develop experimentally the phenomenon of telepathy. He was followed by many others, of more or less scientific prominence, who confirmed his experiments, among whom were Esdaile, Elliotson, Deleuze, Baron Dupotet, and many others of lesser note. The result was that a series of most wonderful psychic phenomena were produced and verified with scientific exactitude. The ultra-scientists, however, continued to cast ridicule upon the phenomena, and to persecute and to drive to ruin every scientist who dared to make an honest experiment. This continued until 1840, when Dr. Braid, a Manchester physician, announced that he had discovered that a condition cognate to that produced by Mesmer could be induced by causing the subject to gaze steadily upon a bright object held in front of and slightly above the eyes. This he denominated "hypnotism; " and the name has since been retained and applied to all the varied phases of induced subjective phenomena, although it strictly applies to but a very small proportion of them. His work, however, attracted very little immediate attention in his own country, and it was not until Liébault confirmed and extended the experiments of Braid that hypnotism was admitted within