Rosicrucian Writings Online
The Science of Seership
By Raymund Andrea, F. R. C.
Grand Master AMORC, Great Britain
[From The Rosicrucian Digest October 1930]
SO PROLIFIC is the output of books on spiritualism in our day, and so questionable in character and void of any helpful instruction is the majority of them, that one may be pardoned for regarding askance a volume that recently appeared under the above title by Mr. Geoffrey Hodson. On perusing this book, however, we find ourselves in an entirely different field of investigation. The matter is exceedingly interesting and merits close attention.
In the first place, the author's method of procedure is thoroughly scientific and his record of results from personal investigation is corroborated by many independent witnesses in the Theosophical and scientific world. There is nothing here of a spiritualistic or mediumistic type. The author is an advocate of exact clairvoyance, and the information he gives of a superphysical nature is derived from careful research through the exercise of that faculty.
In his introductory chapter he states that his purpose is to make a critical examination of the subject of supernormal cognition. Such a purpose can obviously only be adequately fulfilled by one who has personal experience arising from the exercise of supernormal faculties. With these faculties he has made crucial tests along the lines of scientific research and the diagnosis of disease. As a matter of fact, research of this character has been in progress for a considerable period in our Order, and many of us who are intimate with the procedure therein are aware how far advanced are some of the proficients in it and the work they have accomplished. To these the book will make a definite appeal; they will note the researches with complete understanding, and be in a position to compare his explanations and conclusions with their systematized grade instruction and experimental practice.
The records of clairvoyant investigation in the fields of scientific research and the diagnosis of diseases submitted by the author in two memorable chapters on these subjects indicate only too plainly how necessary to the better welfare of humanity is the introduction into professional spheres of a supernormal method of cognition. Every day testifies to the inadequacy of ordinary objective methods of research and application in science and healing, and not in these alone. Many of the author's clairvoyant investigations were carried out in conjunction with the scientific section of the Theosophical Society, when several members of the section were always present and his observations recorded verbatim. The tests perhaps were all the more valuable and convincing because he himself had no knowledge either of occult chemistry or physics, and his descriptions were often recognized by the scientific members as applicable to occult and physical chemistry.
Of a scientific character his investigations embraced such subjects as the Astronomical, Bacteriology, the Electron, Radio-active Substances and the Electric Current. He considers that the value of this research lies in two things: in the actual confirmation, or otherwise, of existing chemical and physical conceptions, and in the proof, which is gradually accumulating, of the value and usefulness of clairvoyance in the observations of physical as well as superphysical matter.
In his chapter on the diagnosis of disease the author points out that the faculty of positive clairvoyance enables its possessor to respond to rates of vibrations which are beyond the normal human range. This is, of course, one of the fundamental tenets of occult science. Vibrational response is the key to the entire progress of the student on the path. The author tabulates five specific powers of cognition which the ascension of vibration in his own experience has opened to him, and which are of special interest in connection with medical research. They are: 1. X-ray vision; 2. The power of magnification and of television; 3. The power to see the feelings and the thoughts of others as well as the vehicles or "bodies" in which those aspects of consciousness normally function; 4. To observe the vital or etheric body; 5. To transcend, in varying degrees, the limitations of matter, time and space, as far as vision is concerned.
These added capacities are the direct result of the active functioning of the force centres or Chakras. The supernormal cognition arising from the activity of these centres the author has applied with much success to the diagnosis of disease. Six cases are dealt with. Professors of medical science may scoff, they may pause and consider; the fact remains that here once again they have something of first importance for them. They can scarcely be expected just yet to accept the author's assertion, for instance, that certain conditions investigated by him are due to a Karmic heritage from the past, that cancer is an elemental disease, and that its cure lies primarily in the exorcism and destruction of the elemental. Moreover, he considers that the most effective method of treatment in all cases of cancer to be that of the use of radio-active substances internally and externally, the direction of electrons, and the application of electric-magnetic forces.
Extensive experiments in the field of psychometry were also made by the author and his information and speculations on this subject are more reasonable than those usually met with in the works of less scientific investigators. The speculative aspect of this chapter centres around the two questions: whether the object used serves as a medium for transmitting vibrations which are conducted from it along the hand and arms of the psychometrist and to his consciousness; or does the object merely serve as a link to place the seer en rapport with the Akashic records, which he then reads without reference to the object itself? The author does not offer a final explanation but proposes the subject as one worthy of study and elucidation.
In the chapter on experimental explorations are given clairvoyant observations of what are called in Theosophical terminology the ego, mental and emotional consciousness. In these brief studies are presented graphic visualizations which are very illuminating and helpful. There is a living reality in these pictures which makes for personal unfolding.
The same high level of investigation is maintained in the study of discarnate life. The claims and methods of the spiritualist are placed in sharp contrast with those of the occultist, and we find ourselves in agreement with the author. The information here is refreshing and stimulating and in frank opposition to the wealth of material published on this subject which is the offspring of automatic writing and other spiritualistic communications. One is bound to affirm that a large percentage of this material is of a nature to nauseate any advanced student of occult research. The author is well aware of this when he warns the student seriously against any methods which demand cessation of full consciousness and intellectual awareness in order to obtain contact with the unseen. The medium, as he truly asserts, is entirely at the mercy of such intelligences as he permits to make use of his body, and is quite unable to scrutinize his unseen visitors, or to apply the reasoning mind to the communications which he receives whilst in a state of trance. "Complete understanding of any plane of Nature cannot be gained from the level of that plane." There is a hint of Baconian sagacity and conciseness in this statement, and it is typical of the author's method. He has made certain clairvoyant investigations of discarnate life and the examples given of communication with discarnate egos are transcripts of postmortem existence, instructive in character and entirely free from the sentimental outpourings of the passive and untutored communicant.
In the chapter on "Clairvoyance in time" the author would appear to have transcribed from the Akashic Records: one section is biographical, the other historical. He presents "The Story of Simon the Essene--An account of a clairvoyant vision of Palestine at the time of the coming of the Lord Christ"; and "Early British Races." We have no means at hand to corroborate these descriptions, but may conjecture whether they are readings from the Records, or possibly phases of the past existence of the author.
The chapters on the psychic powers and the psychic sense organs are enlightening. Forms of meditation are indicated for their awakening and use which are general and Theosophical in character and no doubt constitute a hint in the right direction for development; but, as is usually the case with textbooks on the subject, the student will regret the absence of any system of practical methods of discipline for the evolution of the higher faculties. These chapters on the psychic organs and powers are, of course, the culminating and arresting points of the author's documents, since it is a special development of these powers in his case which has made his investigations possible. But the persistent question of the aspirant is, how to proceed in a definitely practical and systematic way towards this development. In this matter the author does not enlighten us; but concludes with general information regarding the position and functioning of the various psychic centres, with illustrative diagrams, in a truly Theosophical style and in corroboration of its many textbooks. The book, however, is of much interest and is in many ways so clearly in line with important investigations and experimental work which have long been maturing in our hands in the Order and have been brought to considerable proficiency by members of our lodges, that the author's efforts deserve recognition.
("Science of Seership," by Geoffrey Hodson, published by Rider, London. Obtainable through booksellers.)
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