The great endowment left to the Stanford University of California has been practically wasted, because those in charge of it were not Geieys or Richets.

The account of Pithecanthropus is taken from the Bulletin de l'Institut Métapsychique. A well-known lady has described to me how the creature pressed between her and her neighbour, and how she placed her hand upon his shaggy skin. An account of this seance is to be found in Geley's L'Ectoplasmie et la Clairvoyance (Felix Alcau), p.345. On page 296 is a photograph of the strange bird of prey upon the medium's head. It would take the credulity of a MacCabe to imagine that all this is imposture. These various animal types may assume very bizarre forms. In an unpublished manuscript by Colonel Ochorowitz, which I have been privileged to see, some new developments are described which are not only formidable but also unlike any creature with which we are acquainted. Since animal forms of this nature have materialized under the mediumship both of Kluski and of Guzik, their formation would seem to depend rather upon one of the sitters than upon either of the mediums unless we can disconnect them entirely from the circle. It is usually an axiom among Spiritualists that the spirit visitors to a circle represent in some way the mental and spiritual tendency of the circle. Thus, in nearly forty years of experience, I have never heard an obscene or blasphemous word at a seance because such seances have been run in a reverent and religious fashion. The question therefore may arise whether sittings which are held for purely scientific and experimental purposes, without the least recognition of their extreme religious significance, may not evoke less desirable manifestations of psychic force. The high character, however, of men like Richet and Geley ensure that the general tendency shall be good. It might be argued that a subject with such possibilities had better be left alone. The answer seems to be that these manifestations are, fortunately, very rare, whereas the daily comfort of spirit intercourse illumines thousands of lives. We do not abandon exploration because the land explored contains some noxious creatures. To abandon the subject would be to hand it over to such forces of evil as chose to explore it while depriving ourselves of that knowledge which would aid us in understanding and counteracting their results.

The Land of Mist

Arthur Conan Doyle

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Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
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