The Law Of Psychic Phenomena - online book

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256        THE LAW OF PSYCHIC PHENOMENA.
by the suggestion embraced in the spiritistic hypothesis, he will not assume to be a spirit. If he does entertain the spirit hypothesis, he will assume that he is a spirit, and answer accordingly. The mental and physical phenomena are the same in the one case as in the other. The logical conclusion is this: the fact that the intelligence which operates the pencil in the one case claims that it is a disembodied spirit does not constitute valid evidence that it is a spirit. We must look, therefore, to other sources for evidence of spirit origin of the phenomena. Obviously the only test by which that question can be settled is by the character of the communications. When that test is applied, it is found that all that is mysterious about them can be explained on the hypothesis of telepathy or clairvoyance. In the mean time, the fact that the power that writes is always amenable to control by suggestion, constitutes the strongest presumptive evidence that it is the subjective mind of the operator. This is the explanation which is afforded by a knowledge of some of the laws governing the action of the subjective mind. The onus probandi rests with those who claim a supernatural origin for the phenomenon.
TRANCE.
Under the general head of trance may be grouped all that class of cases in which the objective faculties are, for the time being, held in practically complete abeyance, and the subjective mind becomes correspondingly active. Various names have been applied to this condition, such as somnambulism, hypnosis, mesmeric trance, ecstasy, catalepsy, obsession, etc., many of the names implying a theory of causation rather than distinctive features of condition. The condition varies in accordance with the idiosyncrasies of the individual as much as from the causes which induce it. The leading characteristics are, however, the same in all cases. These are, first, the partial or complete abeyance of the objective mind; second, the activity of the subjective mind ; and, third, the perfect amenability of the latter