PSYCHIC RESEARCH is at present
subjected to a great deal of criticism and ridicule, much of which is
justified. It is often stated by opponents of Psychic Research that the
greater portion, some claim ninety percent, of the phenomena is
fraudulent and that the remainder can be better explained on other
grounds, such as personal idiosyncrasies or psycho-neuroses.
Anyone thoroughly versed in the
various phases of Psychic Research is well aware that fraud is practised
by unscrupulous individuals who enter the field merely for pecuniary
gains while they themselves do not believe in the reality of spirits or
During a financial crisis in
Chicago, a lawyer attended a
seance where the medium, a man of questionable integrity, supposedly
materialized the form of the
lawyer's spirit wife. This spirit wife told the lawyer that his money
was not safe in the bank and advised him to bring it to her at the next
seance and she would take care of it for him in the spirit world. She
also told him to bring her diamond brooch to her for safe keeping.
At the next seance the lawyer
brought five hundred dollars and his wife's diamond
brooch and gave them to the purported
materialized spirit wife. Some time after this the lawyer saw the wife
of the medium on the street and to his amazement, she was wearing his
wife's diamond brooch.
Disillusioned, the lawyer hurried to
the home of the medium to accuse him of
theft but the man had left the city.
The lawyer followed him, however, and had
When the case came to trial the judge
asked the lawyer, "To whom did you give
this money and the brooch?"
THE GATEWAY OF UNDERSTANDING
"To my wife," the lawyer answered.
"Where is your wife?"
"In the spirit world," the lawyer admitted.
"Then you must find your wife," the
judge said sarcastically. "The case is dismissed."
Another amusing instance of a
designing medium and credulous victims came to our attention some years
ago. Two ladies were attending, for development, a series of
materialization seances where King Arthur (?) materialized and each lady
claimed him as her own guide. To restore peace the medium dismissed one
woman from the circle but the latter went to another circle where the
medium, a man, also produced
materializations, later proven to be fraudulent.
The lady told the medium of her
longing to have King Arthur for her guide and the medium obligingly
materialized King Arthur, who said to her, "It will be best if you and I
are married. Buy a diamond ring and bring it to this circle. I will
materialize, you can give the ring to me and we will be married. I will
wear the ring in the spirit
world and then I will always belong to you."
The lady followed instructions and
this marriage to a spirit (?) so strongly appealed to four other
romantic women in the circle that they also bought diamond rings and
presented them to their materialized spirit (?) guides, to whom they
were in turn married.
Later one of the "brides"
accidentally met the medium and saw that he was wearing all the rings.
She told the other women of her discovery, but when they attempted to
bring about the arrest of the medium they found that he had disappeared
and with him the rings.
Since physical phenomena, such as
materialization, require darkness or subdued light for genuine
manifestations, this phase is most easily imitated and therefore most
exposes of psychic phenomena are chiefly concerned with physical or
mechanical demonstrations. Owing to frequent exposes of such dishonest
performances, persons who think "very little and very seldom" come to
the conclusion that all
psychic phenomena are fraudulent.
Psychic Research is no exception to
the general rule; fraud and deception are common everywhere, in the
world, in the Christian ministry, in
the various professions. Yet no one will claim therefore that all is
fraud, for it is well known that honesty is the prevailing practice. If
one discovers a bogus coin he does not conclude that all coins are
counterfeit. Likewise, while admittedly there are fraudulent practices
in Psychic Research, to designate all such research as trickery or
imposture is absurd. "The day a man's mind shuts is the day of his
mental death," said Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
Mr. Harry Price, Director of the
British National Laboratory of Psychical Research, states, according to
his reports in "The American Weekly," of the Los Angeles Examiner:
"Probably I have had more experience trying to get to the
bottom of these occult matters than
any man in the world
though I have looked in vain for the
faintest crumb of evidence that the soul, personality or ego persists
"There is something at the bottom of
Spiritualism, but it is not spirits. Though I have had more experience
in Psychical Research than any other man, never have I
found a shred of evidence that anyone
survives the grave... There is no scientific evidence that the dead have
ever communicated with the living, or that a person, once dead, has ever
Mr. Price then describes many
mysterious, unexplainable occurrences, relating that objects sealed in
air-tight glass cases were caused to move; a solid, wooden table was
split into almost matchwood under his hands, etc. He also reports his
observations of a young girl "possessed of a devil," a "poltergeist that
inflicted bites and scratches on the girl which produced marks and
brought forth howls of pain... As to the stigmata, they frequently
appeared while I and other trained observers did not take our eyes from
E. for a Second. At one time they broke out
on her face in such Profusion that
she looked as if tatooed."
"I placed her in a chair in the
middle of a perfectly strange room which I had prepared in advance,
marking the Positions of movable objects, surrounded her
with trained Observers in broad
daylight. She could not move a finger or
* For the harmful results of such
pernicious assertions see Chapter IX, "Is there a
God?" Page 178.
THE GATEWAY OF UNDERSTANDING
an eyelid without some one seeing it.
Yet promptly things began to happen.
Objects began to jump about the room
and even a metal letter got out of the hands
of some workmen who were erecting a
sign outside the building, flew into the
room and wrapped itself around a
knife in the pocket of
one of the observers."
Mr. Price reports many other
experiences too lengthy to quote. To one who is thoroughly versed in the
various phases of Psychic Research there is nothing mysterious in these
occurrences. Through a trance medium, who would allow herself to be
controlled by these activating forces, it could be readily ascertained
that these activities were due to either mischievous, discarnated
spirits or spirits who were eager to make their presence known.
Mr. Price states: "I have seen all
sorts of things happen in a way that defies every
possible scientific precaution
against fraud and every possible explanation
occurring to known natural laws." Since he admits that he does not know
what the force is with which
he is dealing, how can he claim that "it is not spirits"?
Mr. Price's assertion that he has had
more experience in Psychic Research than any one in the world is, to say
the least, an absurd assumption. How can he possibly know to what extent
others are following research in both normal and abnormal psychology?
His statement that there is no
scientific evidence that the dead have ever communicated with the living
is beside the facts. There is no subject so well authenticated in
ancient and modern history as the existence of spirits and their
communication with mortals, for good
as well as otherwise.
He is evidently obsessed with the
idea that there is no spirit return and is laboring merely to
substantiate that notion. Mr. Price seemingly fails to realize that
there are dogmatic spirit forces that are doing all within their power
to negate or prevent the truth of spirit return being known. These are
the forces referred to by Paul in Ephesians 6:12: "The spiritual hosts
of wickedness in the heavenly places."
The axiom, "No one is so blind as he
who will not see," seems evident in Mr. Price's method of research since
he strives to disprove facts instead
of seeking to obtain intelligent evidence of survival.
It may be of interest to relate an
experience that occurred during Mrs. Wickland's early years of
mediumship which undoubtedly Proves survival. Mrs. Wickland had an
intimate friend, Mrs. Lackmund, whose little girl, at the age of two and
a half years, became an imbecile after one sudden convulsion. The mother
was convinced that this condition was caused by spirit obsession, and
together with Mrs. Wickland
began to investigate the subject.
Mrs. Lackmund and Mrs. Wickland had
made an agreement that the one who
should first pass to the spirit side of life would try to return and
communicate with the other,
saying, as a test, "Spirit return is true."
A year after this Mrs. Lackmund died
and two weeks later, early in the morning, she appeared to Mrs. Wickland,
so life-like that the latter did not at first realize she was a spirit.
Mrs. Lackmund touched her friend lightly on the cheek and Mrs. Wickland
sat up, exclaiming, "Mrs. Lackmund!"
Then Mrs. Lackmund spoke. "Anna,
spirit return is true. Go to Professor
Lackmund (her husband) and tell him
my diamond ring is in the bureau drawer."
Eager to ascertain the facts Mrs.
Wickland went to the home of Professor Lackmund, related her experience
and gave the message concerning the diamond ring.
Professor Lackmund then told Mrs.
Wickland that he had been looking everywhere for his wife's ring but was
unable to find it and had intended that
morning to question the servants regarding the disappearance of the
Looking in the bureau drawer, as
suggested, Professor Lackmund found, in a corner, the ring wrapped in a
piece of Paper with a note attached: "Give this ring
to Franz (four year old son) when he
is sixteen years old."
This occurrence could not have been
due to a trick of the Subconscious mind since Mrs. Wickland had known
nothing whatever of the circumstances of the missing ring.'
It is evident that those offering
Psychic phenomena, further evidence of spirit
verification see Chapter III,
"Verification of Spirit Identity."
THE GATEWAY OF UNDERSTANDING
especially physical, should be
carefully scrutinized in order that deception may be avoided. Of the
various phases of psychic phenomena, the unconscious trance state is the
most dependable since through a genuine trance psychic direct contact
with discarnated spirits is facilitated and the identification of many
of the communicators is made possible.
While there are many earnest students
of the interrelationship of the two worlds and many excellent psychic
intermediaries who do great credit to the cause of psychic research, yet
there are also many individuals, nondescript and illiterate, who possess
psychic powers but are dominated largely by designing and deceiving
spirit entities. These entities, seeking to please the vanity of
ambitious psychics, may assume the names of great personages, especially
those of renown and fame, but
their twaddle and inconsistencies are entirely foreign to the original
characters they represent themselves to be.
Many such pretentious assertions have
come to our notice. Some years ago we heard a spirit speak through a
medium saying that he had lived before the Pyramids were built, and yet
he spoke an excellent modern English, as did another
spirit that controlled a woman and
claimed to have been Queen Esther of biblical fame.
A certain medium, whose husband is
declared to be Jesus Christ reincarnated, claims that she is the
reincarnation of the Virgin Mary, yet she swears, smokes and drinks like
a man. A young man of quite ordinary intelligence informed us that the
great Socrates was his spirit guide, and we were recently invited to
attend a circle to hear Jesus talk through a trumpet. (We did not,
however, accept the invitation.)
At a dark seance conducted by some
colored folk for materialization of spirits, a spirit presuming to be
Jesus manifested and talked to the audience, saying, "I am Jesus of
Nazareth, your Savior! King Herod was my father!" Spirits claiming to be
Moses, Abraham and Elijah also materialized and spoke, asserting
themselves to be the original biblical characters.
It seems unbelievable that
intelligent persons who attend these meetings are completely blinded and
fully accept the preposterous claims of such entities. One young man in
of whom one would expect better
judgment, was so infatuated with these "divine (?) entities" that he
could not be reasoned with, an attitude of fixed delusion
which only too frequently leads
individuals to the insane asylum.
When asked, "How do you know this
spirit was Jesus?" the young man replied, "I saw him and
"What language did he speak?"
"English, because that is the
universal language in the spirit world
It is evident that the personalities
alluded to were the type of entities that John referred to in his
admonition: "Believe not every spirit, but try the spirits... because
many false prophets are gone out into the world" (I John 4:1), which
experience has proven is as
true today as it was in that period.
At a gathering of Spiritualists in an
eastern city a woman medium arose, entranced, to address the audience
and her spirit guide said: "I do not allow my
medium to read anything, not even the
newspapers. I am George Washington!"
Another medium then arose and her
spirit guide announced through her: "I am John the Apostle! Many a time
I have rested my head on the bosom of Jesus and that is more than any of
you people can claim!"
Only a short time after this we
learned that a highly cultured gentleman on the western coast, an occult
student, declared himself to be the reincarnation of John the Apostle.
Yet this gentleman had been born before the supposed John the
Apostle spoke through the medium in
the Eastern city.
Too many psychics ignore the
admonition, "Believe not every spirit... but try the spirits." (I John
4:1.) As a result the investigator turns from the entire subject in
disgust and Psychic Research
is relegated to the domain of credulity, delusion and
superstition by the superficial
"In the spheres of spirit life
thought may be said to be the light of the soul, and the
grade of the ideas held by the spirit
is a good index of its spiritual unfoldment." ("Illuminated Buddhism.")
Ordinary, intelligent spirits are
never pretentious, but Plain and simple; they talk intelligently
concerning the relationship and condition between the two worlds. In
THE GATEWAY OF UNDERSTANDING
words, they act intelligently and
depart intelligently. Such will prove to be of greatest blessing to the
investigator and to humanity at large, as they are ever eager to help
human advancement and will be loyal friends, faithful, loving and kind.
As the radio receives every
vibration, harmonious or otherwise, so the advanced Intelligences
perceive human thoughts and actions. There is no admonition so powerful
for right living as the knowledge that we are surrounded by spirits who
are aware of our shortcomings, wilful or dishonorable conduct, since
they discern our very thoughts. "We also are compassed about with so
great a cloud of witnesses." (Hebrews 12:1.)
Maximus of Tyre, Greek rhetorician
and philosopher, said: "God is the Supreme Being, one and indivisible
though called by many names, accessible to reason alone, but as animals
form the intermediate stage between plants and human beings, so there
exist intermediaries between God and man, viz., daemons (spirits), who
dwell on the confines of heaven and earth. The soul in many ways bears a
great resemblance to the divinity; it is partly mortal, partly immortal,
and, when freed from the fetters of the body, becomes a daemon (spirit).
Life is the sleep of the
soul, from which it awakes at death."
No subject from antiquity on is so
thoroughly confirmed in sacred as well as profane history as contact
with the unseen world. Through the ages the influence upon mortals of
intelligent spirits for good, as well as the detrimental interference
of ignorant and mischievous
entities, has been recognized by mankind.
The spirits of former chiefs of
primitive tribes became the ruling powers from the
invisible world and were selfish and
tyrannical beings, oftentimes posing as gods, acting through the
"medicine men" who were required to be psychics before they were
accepted as tribal leaders. Many of the characters referred to in the
Bible as "a jealous God" were unquestionably just such legendary
monstrosities parading as "Lords" who had to be placated by various
offerings, even human sacrifices, to satiate their selfish, barbarous
lust for power over their ignorant devotees. Similar
practices are not entirely extinct
today as there are still
tribes and groups in some countries
that are slaves to such fetishes and are held
under the dominance of despotic
Is Psychic Research dangerous? This
is a mooted question which may he answered both yes and no. Dr. William
J. Mayo, internationally famous surgeon, stated in a paper contributed
to a special volume of the American Journal of Surgery: "If (a person)
wishes to devote his life to a study of so-called psychic phenomena, it
is one thing, but as a side line, investigation of the occult carries
distinct danger to integrity of thought."
A publication, "The Great
Psychological Crime," which lays particular stress upon
the dangers of mediumship, asserts
among other statements: "Up to the present
time there is a wide and prolific
field of insanity which the medical fraternity find
it necessary to classify under the general heading of 'Causes Unknown.'
In this great class, generally speaking, will be found at the present
time, for the most part, the various forms of Hysterical Insanity,
Religious Insanity, Religious Mania, Emotional Insanity, and so-called
'Delusional Insanity' of all kinds and degrees. These, however, might
all be included in one general class and properly
designated as 'Mediumistic Insanity'
or 'Subjective Insanity.'"
A noted English clergyman declared
that there are millions of insane spiritualists in and out of the
asylums. (He failed, however, to state the fact that among the
inmates of the asylums are an
overwhelming number of religious fanatics.)
Dr. Marcel Viollet, Physician to the
Lunatic Asylums, Paris, wrote: "For the sake of the predisposed and the
lunatics as well as for the sake of the normal
participants (of a seance) and even
for the sake of the future of spiritism itself, we utter the warning
cry: Beware! Beware! Avoid all madness, and, at the same time,
avoid the dangers of madness. Filter your assemblies... You, the
predisposed... take care of the disintegration which is lying in wait
for your brain... You— conscientious savants, well-balanced minds, and
the inquisitive—do not let yourselves be encumbered with these perilous
promiscuities. Spare them their
madness, spare yourself the dangers,
guarantee your doctrine
THE GATEWAY OF UNDERSTANDING
and your pre-scientific facts.
Establish a sanitary customs-house at the entrance to your seance-rooms,
and, certain henceforth of being among healthy minds, disclose to us a
Before entering into the problem of
the dangers of Psychic Research, it would be well to consider the
dangers and fatalities resulting from all manner of research and
experimentation. How many lives have been sacrificed to chemistry, the
XRay, radium, the science of aviation, to medical research in its
endeavor to discover hidden causes of diseases, in laboratories where
scientists strive to unravel nature's secrets of electricity in the
effort to control this force for the use of humanity? Countless have
lost their lives in these various avenues of research, and yet where
would the world be today were it not for these pioneers?
In the every-day walks of life
dangers lurk on every hand; thousands and millions are continually
losing their lives from one cause or another. As a matter of fact, our
very physical existence is a matter of uncertainty, and, at best, of
limited duration. Yet, regardless of the manifold disasters, research
and experimentation go on unceasingly and humanity thereby continually
evolves to higher stages of
knowledge, progress and betterment. But for these pioneers of progress,
wrestling to uncover nature's
secrets, men would still be savages, dwelling in smoky caves.
No one with wide experience in
Psychic Research can honestly deny or refute the
assertions made by opponents of
psychic phenomena, that psychic investigation is
unsafe in the hands of thoughtless novices and the neurotic. That the
various mental aberrations quoted above are often consequential to the
impingement of discarnated spirits as contributing factors is no longer
a mere hypothesis but a fully demonstrated fact which medical science
ere long will be obliged to
recognize and include in its diagnosis of mental abnormalities.
Our forty years of research in normal
and abnormal psychology have fully proven that the foregoing statements
have a foundation in fact. Herein lies the cardinal issue pertaining to
Psychic Science, the Scylla and Charybdis, the danger which lurks about
novices or those uneducated in psychic laws, those who "rush in where
angels fear to tread."
Some years ago we knew an excellent
trance medium, Dr. E., highly spiritually minded, through whom genuine
slate writing, verifiable materializations and messages were given. But
he did not understand obsession and when earthbound
spirits impressed him he became
greedy for money, began dishonest practices and sold worthless charms to
poor working girls. His intelligent spirit guides withdrew
from him and the earthbound spirits
dominated him entirely, driving him to utter dissipation and finally
Later this spirit was attracted to
one of our meetings and controlled Mrs. Wickland, begging pitifully for
help. He explained that while he had been honest in his early work, the
woman whom he had married proved to be a dishonest and
fraudulent medium, dominated by
selfish, mischievous spirits. Her invisible forces
had encroached upon his sensitive nature and, unaware of spirit
obsession, he became
overpowered by them, hence his fall and tragic ending.
A young girl in Chicago, who came to
us for help, had attended a seance where a woman, beside whom she sat,
shivered and shook violently, explaining that these manifestations were
due to spirit influences. This woman told the girl that the
latter was psychic and invited her to
come to her seances for development.
The girl did so with the result that
she became obsessed by earthbound spirits to such an extent that she
could hear their voices day and night and finally came to us for relief.
While we were conversing with the patient a spirit controlled her, and I
asked, "Who are you?"
"I am a little girl from the seventh
sphere," the spirit answered.
"A little girl from the seventh
sphere would not come and control a sensitive person against her will,"
The spirit finally admitted being a
man and a vagabond. "But I am not alone; there
are seven of us."
"You must all stay here," I replied.
"You will be helped by Intelligent Spirits. Now you must leave the
"I can't, unless you help me."
Whereupon I made certain passes over
the patient, the spirit became disengaged and the girl left in great
haste. Later this spirit spoke through Mrs. Wickland at our circle
THE GATEWAY OF UNDERSTANDING
and said that he and the other
spirits had for some time been attached to the medium whose seance the
girl had attended but they had left the medium and followed the girl.
Three years afterward we met the girl
again; she had had no further trouble with spirits but assured us that
she had never again gone to a seance. The medium herself came to one of
our meetings and admitted that she had formerly been
bothered by earthbound spirits and
added, "But they are all gone now."
Many demonstrations are brought to
our attention showing the unfortunate results of unwise psychic
experimentation as well as the strange situations in which spirits often
find themselves owing to lack of needed education in life concerning
the simplicity of the change
from the physical to the invisible state of being.
Mr. A., an elderly gentleman, was
well situated financially and had everything to live for but subsequent
to his attendance at spiritualistic dark circles he became afflicted
with insomnia, melancholia and an indefinable depression for which there
was no assignable reason. Being familiar with Psychic Research he came
to our Institute to ascertain if his depression could by any chance be
due to some outside interference. Static electricity was applied to the
gentleman in the presence of Mrs. Wickland who became entranced by a
foreign entity that
strenuously objected to the treatment, saying: "I don't like that!
(Noticing Mr. A.) Hello, pal! I like you so much; you're a nice man."
Dr. Wickland Where did you meet this
I found him at a meeting. (Mr. A. had
attended a trumpet seance.) I
was so depressed. (Coughing and choking, evidently repeating his death
struggle.) I took something. (Committed suicide.) Then I slept for
awhile and after that I walked a long time in the twilight. It seemed
like the desert. Then I came to a
meeting; it was dark and they were
singing all kinds of hymns. And
there I saw my pal.
Dr. How did you become
his pal, John? Is John your name?
Sp. No, my name is Philip Mendelsohn.
Everything seems confused. This gentleman asked me how I became his pal.
There was a gathering sitting in the dark; they were singing hymns but
it was not a church. I looked around and I walked around; I had to push
to get in. Some people were
sitting in a circle but outside of the circle was a big crowd
(spirits) shoving, pushing, pulling and crowding like at the stock
market. I've never been in such a crowd.
Most of them must have been in much
the same condition as you
were—in the twilight.
Sp. You in the circle seemed like
sane people; those outside seemed like crazy people. I was curious and
wanted to see what was going on. After awhile there was a trumpet; they
took hold of it and talked through it and the trumpet was flying around.
They (spirits) were fighting
to have a chance at the trumpet. Some said, "I am father," or "I
am mother." I wondered why they
advertised themselves. Then I thought those in the circle must be blind.
(To Mr. A.) After awhile I
spotted you. I saw a dandy lady (spirit) come to you; she was a peach!
I saw another; she was older. I thought, "You ladies are too nice to get
into this crowd; you are too
respectable." Then I looked at you and I thought you were too nice to be
in that crowd. When the crowd was stampeding every one (spirits) went
away—or up—or some place just disappeared. The nice ladies were gone!
Mr. A. Wouldn't you like to
see them again?
Sp. Yes, I would.
Mr. A. I am strongly impressed that was my spirit wife and my dear
mother. They would help you. Do
THE GATEWAY OF UNDERSTANDING
what you are instructed to do today.
Look around and see whether you see some bright persons here.
Sp. (Gazing about.) There is not such a crowd as that night;
that was like the stock market.
Dr. Are you familiar with
I made my money in the wheat pit.
Then I lost my head and ray money and had to suffer for it. That was in
Chicago; I lived there for
awhile. I had plenty of money.
Money is a good thing to have but if you haven't sense with it, it is a
detriment. My father had money and I went through Yale; I thought I'd be
a civil engineer. Life went all right for awhile but if you have too
much money you don't like to be sent out into the mining country and
have to walk miles and miles. It was too hard and I thought I didn't
need to do it, so I gave it up. I won money
in the market and wanted more. Then
the crash came and down I went.
Then I began to worry and was always
Mr. A. Now all that depression
of yours you bring to me.
I do? I'm sorry. When I come close to
you I can have a little peace. But
I always feel as if my hands are tied
and I get down-hearted and think
there is no use in anything. Did I
make you feel that way?
Mr. A. Yes, you did.
Sp. (Emphatically.) Well, I wouldn't
do that for the world. I had a good brain once but there was too much
money. If you have children and have money, put the money in trust and
let the children work. There, that is the story of my life. (To Mr. A.)
When you went home I followed you because you had such a bright light
around you, and I became a pal of yours. The others (sitters at circle)
at that meeting were gray and muddy; don't ever go there again.
Mr. A. Now there will be
others (intelligent spirits) with a much brighter light to help you.
Sp. Did I do much
detriment to you?
Mr. A. Yes, you did.
(The spirit was then made to
understand that he was a spirit, temporarily in possession of Mrs.
Wickland's body, facts of which he was unaware. His attention
was also called to the presence of
invisible friends whom he could discern if he
would look around carefully. He
remained quiet for a moment.)
Sp. Oh, look there! There's my dear
old mother! She says, "Philip, your father and I have been trying to
find you but you were too clouded in earthly conditions. You were lost
in a cloud of ignorance; you did not pass to the spirit world but stayed
near the earth." My mother thanks you for having helped me. She says
when those ladies (they were so bright and beautiful) saw I was lost
they looked up my father and mother. My parents were Presbyterians, and
they were still in the path of religion, buried in their creed—"bond
servants"—although they were spirits. Your wife and mother brought them
understanding of the laws of life and nature, so we have to thank you
doubly. Your wife says there
are so many spirits in the earth spheres; very few go at once
to the realm of understanding. After
my parents were enlightened they looked for me, they say, and found me
with you. But now I am free.
We all thank you. Your wife and mother are going to take us to the real
spirit world. I thank you and
I am sorry I bothered you.
Mr. A. I am glad I suffered as I did, Philip, if I helped you.
Sp. I was ignorant. It is
easier to say "I believe" than it is to study. My
mother looks so happy, but I feel as
if I were nothing at all.
THE GATEWAY OF UNDERSTANDING
Mr. A. You are just as valuable as anyone, in the sight of the Great
Sp. My mother says my
selfishness has been conquered. If I can ever do a
favor for you, I certainly will. Now
I will go with my people.
(The spirit departed and the
gentleman afterward declared himself relieved of the
As all research has laws which must
be observed, so also has Psychic Research governing laws which must be
thoroughly understood and strictly followed to obviate disaster.
Knowledge and careful observance of these laws will prevent any
unfortunate consequences to the mentally and physically qualified
psychic sensitives or investigators who may be interested in the
furtherance of Psychic Science.
It is advisable to have trained,
experienced researchers to give instruction pertaining to these laws; it
is likewise of paramount importance that the group of investigators be
harmonious, sincere, conscientious persons, exercising
intelligence and reason. These
conditions are necessary to attract intelligent spirits
as guides and protectors.
In such research a thoroughly trained
medium, one who is mentally and physically
well-balanced and willing to make any
sacrifice necessary in the interest of science, is fully protected by
intelligent spirits, who are ever eagerly seeking for
the co-operation of mortals in order to reveal the truth of continued
existence, and particularly to
make known the serious problem of impingement in human affairs by
Many mediums receive thought
impressions emanating from some discourse given by intelligent spirits
in the spirit world and mistake these spirits for "guides," claiming
that Lincoln, Washington or other advanced
spirits are their guides. Yet these mediums are merely tuned in like a
radio on these particular thought waves.
Mediums who suffer writhings,
convulsions and distress
in general when going under control
are not fully developed, nor have the
controlling spirits fully developed
the process of control.
When there is firmly implanted in the
mind of the medium a dogmatic, fixed idea,
say, regarding religion,
reincarnation, egotism, etc., this acts as a deterrent to the
communicating spirits and often
colors the communication.
A medium should be a free soul,
neutral, without creed, dogma or ism, and should
be able to relax completely, leaving
the way open to full control by intelligent spirits. Thus will advanced,
intelligent spirits be attracted, the process of control be easy,
natural and comfortable, strength be given to the medium by the guiding
spirits and truthful messages
and communications be received.
Mrs. M. T. Longley, who devoted most
of her life to Psychic Research, wrote in "The Spirit World": "The power
of mediumship is deep and far reaching; its
source is in the potential energies
of the universe; the principle of all sentient life;
it is divine. Mediumship is delicate,
it is subtle, rooted in the spiritual structure; it may be easily put
out of tune; it can be even perverted to base uses and brought down to
"It is possible for some of these
delicately attuned instruments to be set ajangle by
the wear and tear of conditions, to
be unduly influenced by designing spirits in mortal flesh as well as by
duping beings outside of this clay. The wonder is, that with the
conditions provided them by careless, self-seeking visitors, curiosityhunters—perhaps
from both sides of life, not to speak of designing encroachers on
their magnetic forces and
environments—so many psychics are held to truth and probity in their
line of conduct and of work."...
"The ancients understood the needs of
their oracles; they knew that subtle vibrant forces must away sensitives
who could be susceptible to the forces of the unseen worlds sufficiently
to receive and to register them correctly; so these sensible people
removed their psychics from contact with the ignorant crowd; they built
for them temples, and gave them beautiful surroundings, made them free
from anxiety concerning the supply of bodily needs, brought them into
the Sanctuaries of Silence... and provided the proper
THE GATEWAY OF UNDERSTANDING
conditions for the exercise of
mediumship to its best and fullest extent."
"That which is gained by the good and
pure medium... the sweetness, purity and beauty which come from the
consciousness of helping, sustaining, blessing other human lives, create
a happiness and spiritual wealth in the medium, or in any such
ministrants, that belong to Spirit, and that is everlasting."
Psychic Research should be undertaken
with the determination to ascertain conditions obtaining on the
invisible side through contact with good, bad and
indifferent entities, with charity
for all. That sense of charity will increase with the
realization that the often deplorable conditions of many discarnated
spirits are due to erroneous
doctrines, habits, wilful ignorance or unreasoning skepticism maintained
in earth life.
"The dead know not anything"
(Ecclesiastes 9:5) is statement in the Bible which
the theologian would apply to those
who are supposed to be dead and in the grave,
yet it is not the dead bodies in the grave that are alluded to. Spirits
of those who were born in
ignorance, squalor or evil environment hover about the earth plane in
a twilight state, totally
unaware of being spirits, knowing "not anything" of their situation.
They are alive, but owing to their earthly-mindedness and lack of
knowledge regarding spiritual laws it
is often impossible for enlightened spirits to reach them or bring them
to a realization of their condition.
Spirits unaware of their transition
often find themselves wandering about like persons in a fog, usually
alone, although now and then they may observe some other wanderer. It is
a constant coming and going, a drifting to and fro, described
by some spirits as a condition
comparable to a vast ocean in which ignorant spirits float about,
occasionally contacting each other, then passing on.
Thoughts of help sent out by
enlightened spirits ("the spirits of just men made perfect," Hebrews
12:23) are not perceived by these denizens of the twilight plane, often
because they do not realize that they are discarnated. Although
possessing spirit bodies, these
dwellers in the "gray spheres," as Sir Arthur Conan
Doyle designated this realm, still retain their mortal habits of thinking
to discern the thought waves sent out
by those who would help them.
Hence the enlightened spirits
urgently request humanity to co-operate in this rescue work by
establishing radio centers where psychic intermediaries may serve
as the radio apparatus to which the
ignorant spirits can be attracted and through
which they can be made to realize
their situation. Through such stations intelligent
spirits can contact the ignorant ones
and lead them on to the pathway of understanding.
When earthbound entities are allowed
to temporarily control a mortal sensitive
they generally show susceptibility
to logical reasoning, are usually responsive to a
spirit of charity and become highly
appreciative of help received. Their attention will then be attracted to
the intelligent spirits about them, of whose presence they have been
unaware; the latter are therefore then able to assist them to
progression in the spirit world.
The interference, in various ways, of
discarnated spirits in human affairs has proven a factor which must be
recognized. A fuller knowledge of the significance of spirit influence
will explain many of the involved and perplexing situations in human
lives. To relegate Psychic Research to the limbo of credulity and
superstition will not solve the problem regarding causes of abnormal
mental conditions so often occurring in individuals who know nothing
whatever of psychic phenomena and do not believe in the existence of
spirits. Experience has proven that such persons may be suggestively or
actually obsessed and dominated by discarnated entities without being
aware of it and while refusing to believe in spirit influence.
The obsessing entities may likewise
be unaware of being spirits or of having interfered with anyone and may
even not believe in spirit existence. "When these spirits come to a man
they enter into his entire memory and thus into his entire thought...
These spirits have no knowledge whatever that they are with him."
("Heaven and its Wonders and Hell,"
The advancement of research in normal
and abnormal Psychology has shown definite evidence of utmost
importance; of all sciences none is of greater importance than
THE GATEWAY OF UNDERSTANDING
Psychic Research as it deals with the
condition of the "dead" and their influence for good or ill in human
Instead of being left, as hitherto,
in the hands of the idly curious as a mere pastime and a butt for
ridicule, this research, especially the abnormal phase which reveals the
hidden causes of much that is obscure in many of the mental aberrations
so prevalent on every hand, claims the fullest attention of science.
The editor of "Scientific American"
declared in a recent issue: "Some day the fundamental nature of the
causes of Psychic phenomena may be discovered. The
more precise sciences, such as
physics, may then be able to fashion a tool to work
with, and the investigation may be
taken up in the manner science likes best and is
most accustomed to."
Science wants psychic phenomena to
harmonize with its preconceived notions; however, each problem in nature
has laws of its own which must be recognized,
for the laws of nature will not
adjust themselves to any caprice of men of science.
Psychic Research does not lend itself
to grab-bag methods, such as have often been used by skeptical
investigators, and hasty conclusions, pro and con, must be avoided.
This, of all scientific research, requires an open mind, a keen sense of
discretion and patient effort in accumulating the requisite evidence.
Verification of these statements is
readily obtainable through the co-operation of a
highly trained trance psychic,
developed for the purpose, who, under proper
physical and spiritual protection,
will permit herself, or himself, to be temporarily
controlled by interfering spirits
that have been dislodged from persons suffering from such influence,
incidentally proving that the psychosis was not of physical
origin since this could not have been
transferred to a second person.
Appropriate treatment of the patient
through the use of static electricity, hydrotherapy
and suggestion greatly facilitates the transfer of the spirit, or
psychosis, to the properly developed psychic sensitive. By this method the investigator
obtains direct contact with
the interfering entities who are usually unaware of being spirits
or of being
then in possession of another person's
body. Direct Conversation can be had with them and much discussion may be
necessary to bring these ignorant spirits to an
understanding of their situation, which
many are loath to recognize.
They frequently offer all manner of
argument in an endeavor to disprove the facts,
and deny being spirits, deny having
obsessed anyone or being then in possession of the body of another.
Although it is sometimes a difficult task to convince such spirits of
their actual condition it is generally possible for the investigator to
enlighten them; advanced spirits will then take them in charge for further
The evidence obtained in our research
work has chiefly been secured through the physical organism of Mrs.
Wickland, the author's wife, who has devoted over
forty years to this work without any
harm to herself. Mrs. Wickland's mediumship
is that of unconscious trance, induced
by the Intelligent Invisible Co-Workers; her
eyes are closed and after waking, as
if from a deep sleep, from three or four hours
of trance, she is utterly unconscious
of what has transpired, and, instead of being fatigued, feels rested. Mrs.
Wickland also has the gift of clairvoyance, which is a very important
adjunct in diagnosing cases in which interfering entities are
contributing factors in the various psychoses.
Mrs. Wickland has allowed herself to be
temporarily controlled and possessed by
intelligent entities as well as by all
manner of spirits, many unaware of being dead
but still dominated by various habits
acquired while in the physical existence and still retained mentally.
The many-sided conditions prevailing in
this latter class are almost unbelievable and actual contact with these
spirits Will convince the most skeptical of the serious nature of this