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A Postulate
Allied Psychic Phases
Concise Dictionary Of Astrological Terms
Directions For Using The Ovoids And Shperes For Crystal Or Mirror Vision
Experience And Use
Kinds Of Vision
Materials And Conditions
Obstacles To Clairvoyance
Preliminaries And Practice
Some Experiences
The Faculty Of Seership
The Practice Of Crystal Vision
The Scientific Position
The Vision

Kinds Of Vision

There are two kinds of vision, and each of these may be
perceived in two different ways. The two sorts of vision are
called the Direct Vision and the Symbolic Vision.

The first of these is an exact representation of some scene or
incident which has taken place in the past or will subsequently be
experienced in the future. It may have relation to the experience
of the seer, or of those who are present at the sitting, or yet may
have a general or public application.

The second order of vision is a representation by ideograph,
symbol or other indirect means, of events similar to those
conveyed by direct vision. The visions of Ezekiel and John of
Patmos are of the symbolic order, and although to the seers
themselves there probably was a very clear apperception of their
import, yet for others they require interpretation. In most cases it
will be found that the nature of the vision has relation to that
sphere of life and interest in which the seer or those for whom he
is serving are concerned. But this is not always the case, for there
are some peculiarly sensitive seers whose visions have a wider
range and a more general application. In the first case it would
seem that the impressions latent in the individual sphere of
subconscious activity are brought into evidence, and in the other
case the seer comes into relations with the world-soul or
earth-sphere, so that political, social and cosmic events
are brought out of latency into conscious perception. In most
cases it will be found that answers to questions are conveyed
by symbols, though this is not an invariable rule, as will
appear from the following remarks.

The vision, when it occurs, may be conveyed in one of two ways:
first, as a vivid picture affecting the focus and retina of the eye,
perfect in its outline and colouring, and giving the sense of
nearness or distance; secondly, as a vivid mental impression
accompanied by a hazy or dim formation in the "field" of vision.
In this latter form it becomes an apperception rather than a
perception, the mind receiving the impression of the vision to be
conveyed before it has had time to form and define itself in the

As already intimated, there appears to be a connection between
the temperamental peculiarities of the two classes of clairvoyants
and the kind of vision developed in them. Thus the direct
vision is more generally found in association with the passive
temperament. The direct vision is neither so regular nor so
constant as the symbolic vision owing to the peculiarities of the
negative or passive subject. When it does develop, however, the
direct vision is both lucid and actual, and has literal fulfilment in
the world of experience and fact. It is an actual representation of
what has actually happened or will have place in the future, or yet
may be presently happening at some place more or less distant.

The symbolic vision, on the other hand, is more generally
developed in the positive or active type of seer. It has the
advantage of being more regular and constant in its occurrence
than the direct vision, while at the same time being open to the
objection that it is frequently misinterpreted. Nothing shows this
better perhaps than the various interpretations which have been
made of the Apocalypse.

The positive temperament appears to throw off the mental images
as speedily as they are developed in the subconscious area, and

goes out to meet them in a mood of speculative enquiry. But the
passive temperament most frequently feels first and sees
afterwards, the visionary process being entirely devoid of
speculation and mental activity. In a word, the distinction
between them is that the one sees and thinks while the other feels
and sees.

The manner in which the visions appear to develop in the field
requires some description, and for reasons which will presently
appear it is essential that the earliest experiments should be made
in the light of a duly informed expectancy.

At first the crystal or mirror will appear to be overclouded by a
dull, smoky vapour which presently condenses into milky clouds
among which are seen innumerable little gold specks of light,
dancing in all directions, like gold-dust in a sunlit air. The focus
of the eye at this stage is inconstant, the pupil rapidly expanding
and contracting, while the crystal or mirror alternately disappears
in a haze and reappears again. Then suddenly the haze disappears
and the crystal looms up into full view, accompanied by a
complete lapse of the seer into full consciousness of his

This may be the only experience during the first few sittings. It
may be that of many. But if it occurs it is an entirely satisfactory
and hopeful symptom. For sooner or later, according to the
degree of susceptibility or responsiveness in the subject, there
will come a moment when the milky-looking clouds and dancing
starlights will suddenly vanish and a bright azure expanse like an
open summer sky will fill the field of vision. The brain will now
be felt to palpitate spasmodically, as if opening and closing again
in the coronal region; there will be a tightening of the scalp about
the base of brain, as if the floor of the cerebrum were contracting;
the seer will catch his breath with a spasmodic sigh and the first
vision will stand out clear and life-like against the azure screen of

Now the danger at this supreme moment is that the seer will be
surprised into full waking consciousness. During the process of
abstraction which precedes every vision or series of visions, the
consciousness of the seer is gradually but imperceptibly
withdrawn from physical surroundings. He forgets that he is
seated in a particular place or room, that he is in the company of
another or others. He forgets that he is gazing into a crystal or
mirror. He knows nothing, sees nothing, hears nothing, save that
which is being enacted before the senses of his soul. He loses
sight for the time even of his own identity and becomes as it were
merged in the vision itself.

When, therefore, his attention is suddenly arrested by an
apparition, startling in its reality and instantaneous production,
the reaction is likely to be both rapid and violent, so that the seer
is frequently carried back into full waking consciousness. When,
however, the mind is previously instructed and warned of this
stage of the process, a steady and self-possessed attitude is
ensured and a subconscious feeling of expectancy manifests at
the critical moment. I have known so many cases of people being
surprised out of clairvoyance and so to have lost what has often
been an isolated experience, that this treatise will be wholly
justified if by the inclusion of this warning the novice comes
successfully through his first experience of second sight.

We come now to the point where it becomes necessary to consider
other important reactions which the development of any psychic
sense involves. To some favoured few these supernormal faculties
appear to be given without any cost to themselves. Perhaps they
are direct evolutional products, possibly psychic inheritances;
but to such as have them no price is asked or penalty imposed.

Others there are who are impelled by their own evolutional
process to seek the development in themselves of these psychic
powers; and to these a word of warning seems necessary, so that
at the risk of appearing didactic I must essay the task. To some it
may seem unwelcome, to others redundant and supererogatory.
But we are dealing with a new stage in evolutional progress--the
waking up of new forces in ourselves and the prospective use of a
new set of faculties. It is of course open to anybody to
experiment blindly, and none will seek to deter them save those
who have some knowledge of the attendant dangers, and which
knowledge alone can help us to avoid. I should consider the man
more fool than hero who, in entire ignorance of mechanics and
aeronautics, stepped on board an aeroplane and started the
engines running. Even the most skilful in any new field of
experiment or research consciously faces certain but unknown
dangers. The victims of the aeroplane--brave pioneers of human
enterprise and endeavour that they were--fell by lack of
knowledge. By lack of knowledge also have the humane efforts
of many physicians been cut short at the outset of what might
have been a successful career. It was this very lack of knowledge
they knew to be the greatest of all dangers, and it was this they
had set out to remedy.

It is not less dangerous when we begin to pursue a course of
psychic development. The ordinary functions of the mind are
well within our knowledge and control. There is always the will
by which we may police the territory under our jurisdiction and
government. It is another matter when we seek to govern a
territory whose peculiar features and native laws and customs are
entirely unknown to us. It is obvious that here the will-power, if
directed at all, is as likely to be effectual for evil as for good.
The psychic faculties may indeed be opened up and the unknown
region explored, but at fatal cost, it may be, to all that constitutes
normal sanity and physical well-being; in which case one may
say with Hamlet it be better to "bear those ills we have, than fly
to others that we know not of."

Some of the conditions imposed upon those who, not being
naturally gifted in this direction, would wish to experiment in
clairvoyant development, may conveniently be stated and
examined in another chapter.

Next: Obstacles To Clairvoyance

Previous: Preliminaries And Practice

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