THE LAW OF PSYCHIC PHENOMENA.
it is shown that physicians enjoy such a monopoly of the cardinal virtues that it is unsafe to intrust the forces of nature in the hands of others.
In the mean time the world at large will continue to believe that the laws of hypnotism are no exception to the rule that the forces of nature, when once understood, are designed for the highest good of mankind; and they will continue to demand that those forces shall not be monopolized by any man, or set of men, body politic, or corporation.
From what has been said, the supreme folly of legislation to prohibit experiments in hypnotism is manifest. No one will deny that when a hypnotist permits himself to exercise his art in private he is in possession of opportunities which, under other conditions, might give him an undue advantage over a subject of the opposite sex; but, from the verj nature of things, that advantage is infinitely less than thai enjoyed by physicians in their habitual intercourse with their patients. Until it is shown that physicians never take advantage of their confidential relations with their patients; until it is shown that physicians are exempt from human passions and frailties; or, at least, until it is shown that physicians are more platonic in their emotions than the ordinary run of human beings, the world will continue to regard their demand that the study of experimental psychology shall be restricted by legislation to the medical profession, as an exhibition of monumental impudence. It cannot be forgotten that it was the medical profession that drove Mesmer into a dishonored exile and a premature grave for the sole reason that he healed the sick without the use of pills. The faculty ridiculed, proscribed, and ostracized every medical man who dared to conduct an honest investigation of mesmeric phenomena. And now that the scientists of Europe are compelled to admit the therapeutic value of the science, they are instant in demand that no one but physicians shall be permitted to make experiments. It is perhaps natural and right that the treatment of disease by means of drugs should be restricted to