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Observations placeholder

Lethbridge, T C - Ghost and Ghoul - White Hawk



Type of Spiritual Experience


A description of the experience

J C Lethbridge – Ghosts and Ghouls

In 1940 I heard of a wise woman who was said to be unusual and to have what is called a 'spirit guide' named White Hawk.

There is always something which appears to be incongruous about these names. All one's hackles rise at once when one hears them mentioned. In point of fact, they are probably pseudonyms adopted for some very good reason to conceal the identity of whatever voice may be speaking. There was evidently a problem here which was worth investigating and, having some personal matters which would make a question, I went to see the lady. She was very dark of hair, eyes and skin, but I was unable to decide whether she was of gipsy origin or had a lot of Mediterranean blood in her.

She summed me up in a few minutes, not getting it right I fancy, and then said she would go into a trance. She said that she only did so for people she felt sure could stand it. She had more than one spirit guide, she said, but she hoped that she would get White Hawk. He was much the best guide, but was liable to be fierce with people and they were sometimes alarmed by it. White Hawk was a Red Indian and his spirit occupied her body while she was in the trance.

The wise woman sat in her chair, passed both her hands downwards over her face two or three times, gave a deep sound like a kind of grunt and was then instantly out. She appeared to be out in the sense of a boxer who is knocked out. She was not asleep in the ordinary sense. As I watched, her face appeared to change from a rounded and smooth one to something much more rugged. It did not look at me. Her voice, when it came again, was quite different to what it had been before. It was deeper, more guttural and no longer feminine. It addressed me as 'My friend' and appeared to be that of an elderly man who had learnt fluent English, but was not using his native tongue.

The English was perfect in grammar and so on, but seemed to be learnt. It did not really belong to the speaker. The voice launched at once into the problem I had brought. I had to ask no question. A solution was suggested, but as we have already dealt with precognition, there is no need to go into that now.

The voice talked to me in a natural way and I replied as naturally as possible. For my part, however, it was rather like talking to a stranger who has come to a party with all his buttons undone. You try to go on as if nothing unusual had happened.

Then conversation died down. The voice said that it would see me again and I was apparently dismissed. The woman in the chair stirred, rubbed her eyes and began to look round the room in a bemused manner. After a moment or two, she talked again in her original voice. Had I talked to White Hawk? Had he been nice to me?  and so on. I assured her that it had been a most interesting experience; gave her the small fee for which she asked; and hurried out into the fresh air. I was completely at a loss to explain what had happened.

I have talked to the wise woman on other occasions without her going into a trance and I am convinced that she had neither the education nor the general knowledge to be able to converse in the way the voice talked. While it was talking, her whole personality was changed. I have since studied ponderous German works on this subject and do not agree with the conclusions that this kind of thing was acted. The wise woman was as dead to the world as a dead drunk. You could have lifted up her eyelids and rubbed her eyeballs with your finger and she would not have noticed it. This is only an opinion, of course, but it represents as careful observation as I was able to give of someone sitting within three feet of me. It is typical of the many reports that are given of mediums who go into a 'dead trance'.

Taking the voice as an indication of personality, there is no question but that I was talking to an entity of great intelligence and a forceful character. It had the ring of real authority behind it and spoke as if it were in the habit of ordering about personalities of the same general type. I have conversed with a number of famous men, both from the fighting services and from the intellectual world. This voice had the qualities of both of them combined. None of the living personalities gave me anything like the sense of power which was behind the voice.

Sceptics over a period of 300 years have been unable to explode the Red Indian belief that their 'medicine-men' communicated with spirits by the 'shaking Tent' technique. If the medicine-men did indeed master this art, who would be more likely than they to employ it in reverse from another plane?


The source of the experience

Lethbridge, Thomas Charles

Concepts, symbols and science items


Science Items

Activities and commonsteps