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Simple Clairvoyance

In a previous chapter we have seen that there are three well-defined
classes of clairvoyance, namely, (1) Simple clairvoyance; (2) Clairvoyance
in space; and (3) Clairvoyance in Time. I shall now consider these in
sequence, beginning with the first, Simple Clairvoyance.

In simple clairvoyance the clairvoyant person merely senses the auric
emanations of other persons, such as the auric vibrations, colors, etc.,
currents of thought vibrations, etc., but does not see events or scenes
removed in space or time from the observer. There are other phenomena
peculiar to this class of clairvoyance which I shall note as we progress
with this chapter.

An authority on the subject of astral phenomena has written interestingly,
as follows, regarding some of the phases of simple clairvoyance: "When we
come to consider the additional facilities which it offers in the
observation of animate objects, we see still more clearly the advantages
of astral vision. It exhibits to the clairvoyant the aura of plants and
animals, and thus in the case of the latter their desires and emotions,
and whatever thoughts they may have, are all plainly shown before his
eyes. But it is in dealing with human beings that he will most appreciate
the value of this faculty, for he will often be able to help them far more
effectually when he guides himself by the information which it gives him.

"He will be able to see the aura as far up as the astral body, and though
that leaves all the higher part of a man still hidden from his gaze, he
will nevertheless find it possible by careful observation to learn a good
deal about the higher part from what is within his reach. His capacity of
examination of the etheric double will give him considerable advantage in
locating and classifying any defects or diseases of the nervous system,
while from the appearance of the astral body he will at once be aware of
all the emotions, passions, desires and tendencies of the man before him,
and even of very many of his thoughts also.

"As he looks at a person he will see him surrounded by the luminous mist
of the astral aura, flashing with all sorts of brilliant colors, and
constantly changing in hue and brilliancy with every variation of the
person's thoughts 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 him 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 comparative rest, a clue to the general disposition and
character of its owner."

By simple clairvoyance in a certain stage of development the clairvoyant
person is able to sense the presence of the human aura, by means of his
astral sight. The human aura, as all students of occultism know, is that
peculiar emanation of astral vibrations that extends from each living
human being, surrounding him in an egg-shaped form for a distance of two
to three feet on all sides. This peculiar nebulous envelope is not visible
to the physical sight, and may be discerned only by means of the astral
senses. It, however, may be dimly "felt" by many persons coming into the
presence of other persons, and constitutes a personal atmosphere which is
sensed by other persons.

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, being 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 or 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 advanced occultist with clairvoyant
vision, for he is able to read the character and general mental states of
the person by means of studying his astral auric colors. I have explained
these auric colors, and their meanings, in my little book entitled "The
Human Aura."

The human aura is not always in a state of calm phosphorescence, however.
On the contrary, it sometimes manifests great flames, like those of a
fiery furnace, which shoot forth in 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 astral vibrations, some of which travel
for great distance.

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 cases of
poor health, these lines droop, curl and present a furlike appearance. It
is sometimes filled with minute sparkling particles, like tiny electric
sparks in rapid 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 summer. If
the student will close his eyes partially, and will 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 the
person is sitting 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 to
perceiving his own prana-aura. The simplest way to obtain this last
mentioned result is to place your fingers (spread out in fan-shape)
against a black background, in a dim light. Then gaze at the fingers with
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 nearly everyone.

Another peculiar phenomenon of the astral plane, perceived by clairvoyants
of a certain degree of development, is that which is known as the
"thought-form." A thought-form is a specialized grouping of astral
substance, crystalized by the strong thought impulses or vibrations of a
person thinking, or manifesting strong emotional excitement. It is
generated in the aura of the person, in the first place, but is then
thrown off or emitted from the atmosphere of the person, and is sent off
into space. A thought-form is really but a strongly manifested thought or
feeling which has taken form in the astral substance. Its power and
duration depend upon the degree of force of the thought or feeling
manifesting it.

These thought-forms differ very materially from one another in form and
general appearance. The most common form is that of a tiny series of
waves, similar to those caused by the dropping of a pebble in a pond of
water. Sometimes the thought-form takes on the appearance of a whirlpool,
rotating around a centre, and moving through space as well. Another form
is like that of the pin-wheel fireworks, swirling away from its centre as
it moves through space. Still another form is that of a whirling ring,
like that emitted from a smokestack of a locomotive, or the mouth of a
smoker--the familiar "ring" of the smoker. Others have the form and
appearance of semi-luminous globes, glowing like a giant opal.

Other thought-forms are emitted in jet-like streams, like steam puffed out
from a tea-kettle. Again, it will appear as a series of short puffs of
steam-like appearance. Again, it will twist along like an eel or snake.
Another time it will twist its way like a corkscrew. At other times it
will appear as a bomb, or series of bombs projected from the aura of the
thinker. Sometimes, as in the case of a vigorous thinker or speaker, these
thought-form bombs will be seen to explode when they reach the aura of the
person addressed or thought of. Other forms appear like nebulous things
resembling an octopus, whose twining tentacles twist around the person to
whom they are directed.

Each thought-form bears the same color that it possessed when generated in
the aura of its creator, though the colors seem to fade with time. Many of
them glow with a dull phosphorescence, instead of bright coloring. The
atmosphere of every person, and every place, is filled with various
thought-forms emanated from the person, or persons who inhabit the place.
Each building has its own distinctive thought-forms, which permeate its
mental atmosphere, and which are clearly discernible by trained
clairvoyant vision.

I here take the liberty of quoting a few paragraphs from my little book
entitled "The Astral World," in which the phenomena of the astral plane
are explained in detail. I reproduce them here in order to show you what
you may see on the astral plane when your clairvoyant vision is
sufficiently developed to function there. The words are addressed to one
who is sensing on the astral, plane.

"Notice that beautiful spiritual blue around that woman's head! And see
that ugly muddy red around that man passing her! Here comes an
intellectual giant--see that beautiful golden yellow around his head, like
a nimbus! But I don't exactly like that shade of red around his body--and
there is too marked an absence of blue in his aura! He lacks harmonious
development. Do you notice those great clouds of semi-luminous substance,
which are slowly floating along?--notice how the colors vary in them.
Those are clouds of thought-vibrations, representing the composite thought
of a multitude of people. Also notice how each body of thought is drawing
to itself little fragments of similar thought-forms and energy. You see
here the tendency of thought-forms to attract others of their kind--how
like the proverbial birds of a feather, they flock together--how thoughts
come home, bringing their friends with them--how each man creates his own
thought atmosphere.

"Speaking of atmospheres, do you notice that each shop we pass has its own
peculiar thought-atmosphere? If you look into the houses on either side of
the street, you will see that the same thing is true. The very street
itself has its own atmosphere, created by the composite thought of those
inhabiting and frequenting it. No! do not pass down that side street--its
astral atmosphere is too depressing, and its colors too horrible and
disgusting for you to witness just now--you might get discouraged and fly
back to your physical body for relief. Look at those thought-forms flying
through the atmosphere! What a variety of form and coloring! Some most
beautiful, the majority quite neutral in tint, and occasionally a fierce,
fiery one tearing its way along toward its mark. Observe those whirling
and swirling thought-forms as they are thrown off from that
business-house. Across the street, notice that great octopus monster of a
thought-form, with its great tentacles striving to wind around persons and
draw them into that flashy dance-hall and dram-shop. A devilish monster
which we would do well to destroy. Turn your concentrated thought upon it,
and will it out of existence--there, that's the right way; watch it sicken
and shrivel! But, alas! more of its kind will come forth from that place."

The above represents the sights common to the advanced occultist who
explores the astral plane either in his astral body, or else by means of
clairvoyant vision. To such a one, these sights are just as natural as
those of the physical plane to the person functioning by ordinary physical
senses. One is as natural as is the other--there is nothing supernatural
about either.

But there are other, and even more wonderful attributes of astral
visioning than that which we have just related. Let us take a general
survey of these, so that you may be familiar with what you hope to see on
the astral plane, and which you will see when you have sufficiently
developed your clairvoyant powers.

What would you think if you could "see through a brick wall?" Well, the
clairvoyant is able to do this. For that matter, the physical X Rays are
able to penetrate through solid substances, and the astral vibrations are
even more subtle than these. It seems strange to hear of this kind of
visioning as purely natural, doesn't it? It smacks strongly of the old
supernatural tales--but it is as simply natural as is the X Ray. The
advanced clairvoyant is able to see through the most solid objects, and
inside of anything, for that matter. The astral senses register the subtle
vibrations of the astral plane, just as the physical eye registers the
ordinary rays of light-energy. You are able to see through solid glass,
with the physical eye, are you not? Well, in the same way the clairvoyant
sees through solid steel or granite. It is all a matter of registering
vibrations of energy--nothing more, and nothing less.

It is in this way that the trained clairvoyant is able to read from closed
books, sealed letters, etc. In the same way, he is able to pierce the
dense soil, and to see far down into the depths of the earth, subject to
certain limitations. Veins of coal, oil, and other substances have been
discovered clairvoyantly in this way. Not every clairvoyant is able to do
this, but the advanced ones have done it. In the same way, the trained
clairvoyant is able to see inside the bodies of sick persons, and to
diagnose their ailments, providing, of course, he is familiar with the
appearance of the organs in health and in disease, and has a sufficient
knowledge of physiology and pathology to interpret what he sees.

An authority on the phenomena of the astral plane has written
entertainingly and correctly regarding this phase of simple clairvoyance,
as follows: "The possession of this extraordinary and scarcely expressible
power, then, must always be borne in mind through all that follows. It
lays every point in the interior of every solid body absolutely open to
the gaze of the seer, just as every point in the interior of a circle lies
open to the gaze of a man looking down upon it. But even this is by no
means all that it gives to its possessor. He sees not only the inside as
well as the outside of every object, but also its astral counterpart.
Every atom and molecule of physical matter has its corresponding astral
atoms and molecules, and the mass which is built up out of these is
clearly visible to the clairvoyant. Usually the astral form of any object
projects somewhat beyond the physical part of it, and thus metals, stones
and other things are seen surrounded by an astral aura.

"It will be seen at once that even in the study of inorganic matter a man
gains immensely by the acquisition of this vision. Not only does he see
the astral part of the object at which he looks, which before was wholly
hidden from him; not only does he see much more of its physical
constitution than he did before, but even what was visible to him before
is now seen much more clearly and truly. * * * Another strange power of
which he may find himself in possession is that of magnifying at will the
minutest physical or astral 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 become
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 write so facilely, some very wonderful and
beautiful revelations may be expected.

"This is one of the SIDDIHIS or powers described in the Oriental
books as accruing to the man who devotes himself to spiritual development,
though the name under which it is there mentioned might not be immediately
recognizable. It is referred to as 'the power of making oneself large or
small at will,' and the reason of a description which appears so oddly to
reverse the fact is that in reality the method by which this feat is
performed is precisely that indicated in these ancient books. It is by the
use of temporary visual machinery of inconceivable minuteness that the
world of the infinitely little is so clearly seen; and in the same way (or
rather in the opposite way) it is by enormously increasing the size of the
machinery used that it becomes possible to increase the breadth of one's
view--in the physical sense as well as, let us hope, in the moral--far
beyond anything that science has ever dreamt of as possible for man. So
that the alteration in size is really in the vehicle of the student's
consciousness, and not in anything outside of himself; and the old
Oriental books have, after all, put the case more accurately than have we.
I have indicated, though only in the roughest outlines, what a trained
student, possessed of full astral vision, would see in the immensely wider
world to which that vision introduced him; but I have said nothing of the
stupendous change in his mental attitude which comes from the experimental
certainty regarding matters of paramount importance. The difference
between even the profoundest intellectual conviction, and the precise
knowledge gained by direct personal experience, must be felt in order to
be appreciated."

Now, here at this place, I wish to call the attention of the student to
the fact that while the above stated, phenomena strictly belong to the
class of "simple clairvoyance," rather than to "space clairvoyance," or
"time clairvoyance" respectively, nevertheless the same phenomena may be
manifested in connection with that of these other classes of clairvoyance.
For instance, in space clairvoyance the trained clairvoyant is able not
only to perceive things happening at points far distant, but may also (if
highly developed psychically) be able to perceive the details just
mentioned as well as if he were at that distant point in person. Likewise,
in time clairvoyance, the clairvoyant may exercise the power of magnifying
vision regarding the object far distant in time, just as if he were living
in that time. So here as elsewhere we find the different classes of
phenomena shading and blending into each other. At the best,
classifications are useful principally for convenience in intellectual
consideration and reasoning.

In the same way, the clairvoyant may manifest the above mentioned forms of
astral sensing in cases when the astral vision has been awakened by
psychometry, or by crystal gazing, as well as in those cases in which the
condition has been brought about through meditation, or similar methods.

I would also call the attention of the student to the fact that in the
above description of the phenomena of simple clairvoyance I have made no
mention of the sights of the astral plane which often become visible to
the clairvoyant, and which have to do with astral bodies, astral shells,
the disembodied souls of those who have passed on to other planes of
existence, etc. I shall take up these matters in other parts of this
course, and shall not dwell upon them in this place. But, I wish you to
remember that the same power which enables you to sense other objects by
means of the astral scenes, is the same that is called into operation in
the cases to which I have just referred.

The astral plane is a wonderful plane or field of being, containing many
strange and wonderful beings and things. The person living on the physical
plane may visit the astral plane in the astral body; and, again, he may
perceive the happenings and scenes of that plane by means of the awakened
and developed astral senses. Some clairvoyants find it easy to function in
one way, and some in another. It is reserved for the scientifically
developed clairvoyant to manifest the well-rounded power to perceive the
phenomena of the astral plane in its wonderful entirety.

Finally, you will see by reference to other chapters of this book, that
one may manifest simple clairvoyant powers (as well as the more
complicated ones of time and space clairvoyance) not only in the ordinary
waking state, but also in the state of dreams. In fact, some of the most
striking psychic phenomena are manifested when the seer is in the dream
state. As we proceed, you will find that every phase of the great subject
will fit into its place, and will be found to blend with every other
phase. There will be found a logical harmony and unity of thought
pervading the whole subject. But we must use single bricks and stones as
we build--it is only in the completed structure that we may perceive the
harmonious unity.

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