< A Budget of Avient Dreams (continued from page 3-190) >
shaped instrument over his shoulders, under which it was customary for offenders to be scourged to death. No notice was taken of the transaction, and the games were proceeded with as usual. Not long after, however, Jupiter presented himself in a dream to a certain plebeian, Tiberius Abinius, bidding him intimate to the consuls the god’s disapproval of the unauthorized prelude to the Circensian Games, which were to be celebrated over again, else grave danger would befall the city. The man’s own obscure condition made him shrink from obeying the command, unwisely, as it proved ; for his son died a few days after and he was himself seized with a severe illness. Then the god appeared to him again, and asked the victim whether he had been sufficiently punished for his hesitation. Hereupon Abinius, by the advice of his friends, had himself carried in a litter to the consuls, by whom he was introduced to the Senate. To this body he laid bare the whole facts of the case, and the astonishment of his hearers was brought to a climax, when, at the end of his recital, his health was suddenly restored to him, and he returned home on foot.
The Seven Planetary Spheres
9. From this we may deduce the following as evident—that the mental and vital powers are not separated in individuals: for the soul is never active when the vital powers are extinguished, because only life can contain the soul.
It is, therefore, equally comprehensible how between two living persons a peculiar reciprocity is possible ; such as the sympathetic influence of the soul of the one upon the vital powers of the other, and in return the influence of the vital powers upon the soul, not only in the immediate neighborhood, but also under circumstances, as it were, atmospherically at a distance—as is proved by the appearance of magnetism in modern, and magic in ancient times.
10. If the supernatural and supermaterial may be reflected upon the ensouled vital powers from an unmeasured distance (imaginatio passiva), and therefore influences may take place between the mind and body, of which, however, the soul has no distinct consciousness, then is the direct mental influence and activity undeniable ; for that which is spiritual, is not separately spiritual, and all wonders of the world of spirits are in the end resolved into Wonders of our own mind:. Whether, however, spirits are in themselves absolutely supernatural, supermaterial, or not ; from whence they act and whether directly through powers, or indirectly upon the fancy or vital powers, is not to be explained, and as little to be denied as proved. We may as well conjecture a multitude of spiritual beings unconnected with material nature, as that the physical world consists of a multitude of things and powers ; we may conjecture that the spiritual beings act according to their nature, directly upon the mental and vital powers, upon peculiarly disposed persons, so that the impulse touches the tuned chord like a breath of air. The vital power touched in this manner transforms for itself the spiritual into the material, according to innate forms, and places this before itself in passive or active conditions. But we may also believe that the vital soul-power is self-illumining, and that the spiritual eye of the inner sense under (unknown) circumstances perceives polar perceptions, even in distance of time and space, reflected upon itself—as if felt at a distance—as if it, came upon spiritual, supernatural powers, which it feels in its nature—and then possibly illuminates by its contemplation. According to Pordage, the soul alone perceives external things through its outwardly innate tending power, or by a radiation from outward things into itself. In such a manner the most varied spiritual communications of different nations and individuals may be explained, and all the contradictions in the objective revelations may be solved, which in nations and men of different faith and imagination take place in respect to spiritual apparitions, where each one communicates with spirits after his own nature ; for some people will see a human form in a cloud, while others will imagine it to resemble Juno. The Oriental seer contemplates the world in Brahma’s light ; the Moslem sees the houris in Mohamet’s heaven ; the rude Schaman hears in his ecstacy terrible spirits under the roof of his hut, and the witch of the middle ages even her communications with the devil ; in short, science here only supplies conjectures, not certainties. But these conjectures at least make this in science a certainty, that spirits and supernatural appearances have no objective existence in fixed shapes, for they must, if such were the case, always appear in the same manner ; they' are, therefore, spiritual appearances without spirits.
If the conclusions already arrived at rest upon a firm foundation, and, as it appears to me, are indisputable, we may conclude as follows:
1. That there is a universal conception in nature, and a mutual reciprocity in sympathetical and anti-pathetical contrasts, but which cannot be perceived by the waking senses ; so that there is, at all events, a something of which the senses do not give direct evidence.
2. That the world is not a piece of mechanism, which runs down by an objectless necessity, and again winds itself up blindly ; and that the world is also not of a soulless nature.
3. That nothing is known concerning a spiritual world.
4. That the living soul not only stands in sympathetic connection with the body, but also with the principles of nature, between which exists the invisible threads of attraction, limits of which no mathematics can define.
5. That a spiritual communion exists between man and man, and therefore also between man and superior beings, is not to be denied ; for in all history such a communion is not only suspected, but dimly felt, and even spoke of in subjective assertion.
6. That all the propaganda of common sense explanations will certainly strive in vain and will never succeed in the attempt to entirely eradicate, root and branch, the presentiments, sensations, and convictions of firmly founded faith or superstition, or to bolt or bar so securely all castles, ruins, and cloisters, that ghosts and apparations shall not still, as before, take up their abode there.
7. That also dogmatic belief will as little be able to exorcise ghosts, or banish evil spirits, which trouble the brain as visions, and lurk in the dark corners of the mind.
8. Lastly, that in German science nothing yet is certain or fixed respecting nature and spirit, the soul or body, or the possibility or probability of reciprocal influences :
“ Dies diei eructat verbatum, et nox nocti indicat scientiam,” (Ps. xviii. 13.)
True magic lies in the most secret and inmost powers of the mind. Our spiritual nature still, as it were, barred within us. All spiritual wonders in the end become but wonders of our own minds.
In magnetism lies the key to unlock the future science of magic, to fertilize the growing germs in cultivated fields of knowledge, and reveal the wonders of the creative mind—Magues, Magia, Imago !—Ennemoser's History of Magic.
Jokes on the Slate, to raise the laugh,
One ray, at last, of penetrating light,
A young man to the Barber’s went,
’Tis trickery, So you needn’t “ try
So clever, confident, and young,
The apostle bade us “try the spirits,”