Observations placeholder

Dr William Gower’s patient



Type of Spiritual Experience


This man nearly went out of body – all the preliminaries were in place, but he lost consciousness at the crucial moment.  This may have been ecstasy or she may just have been a spirit helper

A description of the experience


Dr William Gowers Epilepsy [1881]

The patient was an intelligent man, twenty-six years of age, and all his attacks began in the same manner.

First there was a sensation [under the ribs, on the left side] "like pain with a cramp” then, this sensation continuing, a kind of lump seemed to pass up the left side of the chest, with a "thump, thump," and when it reached the upper part of the chest it became a "knocking," which was heard as well as felt.

The sensation rose up to the left ear, and then was like the "hissing of a railway engine," and this seemed to "work over his head." Then he suddenly and invariably saw before him an old woman in a brown-stuff dress, who offered him something which had the smell of Tonquin beans.

The old woman then disappeared, and two great lights came before him - round lights, side by side, which got nearer and nearer with a jerking motion. When the lights appeared the hissing noise ceased, and he felt a choking sensation in the throat, and lost consciousness in the fit, which, from the description, was undoubtedly epileptic [undoubtedly!! - ah doctors, clever men but not wise men].

The source of the experience

Ordinary person

Concepts, symbols and science items


Spirit helper


Science Items

Activities and commonsteps