Ossowiecki, Stefan - sees an old urn, cotton wool and photographic plates
Type of Spiritual Experience
Multiple bridges, so multiple scenes, very complex and a real achievement
A description of the experience
Mary Rose Barrington, Ian Stevenson and Zofia Weaver, A World in a Grain of Sand: The Clairvoyance of Stefan Ossowiecki, 2005.
The Formal Experiments - Experiment series 8-March 1923 (identifying contents of a package)
Mr. Marjan Wawrzeniecki is a distinguished painter who also works in the fields of archaeology and anthropology. We asked him to be good enough to let us have some items that could be used in an experiment, and to tell no one about this. MW does not know M. Ossowiecki. The members of our society also agreed to keep the experimental project secret right up to the time it was to be carried out.
MW was to place some articles, each one separately in boxes of equal size, wrapping them first in cotton wool, to prevent any noise that might indicate the nature of those items. In each box there would also be a label bearing a number.
In some sealed envelopes marked with corresponding numbers, would be placed a description of the articles. To lighten his task I personally sent him four square boxes of equal size,9.5 x 9.5 x 2cm, and a packet of cotton wool.
On 14th February 1923 MW sent us the four boxes tied up crosswise, the loose ends sealed with his own seal (we had absolutely no idea of their contents) and four envelopes, also sealed, marked with numbers 1, 2,3 and 4. All these objects were kept by me, under lock and key.
On 28th February we approached M. Ossowiecki, asking if he would grant us a session. On 10th March we received an answer telling us that M. Ossowiecki would receive us as his guests at the hotel de l'Europe on 12th March at 8 p. m.
MW was not informed of this.
On the agreed day I went to the hotel de l'Europe together with the Vice-President of our society, the late General T, physician and head of the health division of the Ministry of War (he died on 4th July).We found M. and Mme. Ossowiecki, M. MN, Envoy Extraordinary and Cabinet Minister from Latvia, together with his wife.
M. Ossowiecki took one of the boxes that had earlier been chosen at random by me, wrapped in several layers of paper, tied and sealed with my seal, and he sat on the sofa, beside me. From time to time M. Ossowiecki joined in the general conversation, which was interrupted several times by the telephone.
Every word spoken by M. Ossowiecki was taken down carefully by me. They were as follows.
"It is a black box. It used to contain a dozen photographic plates. One of the plates was broken. They were taken out of the box by a slim woman, who loves music. The box was found somewhere in the area of Chmielna street, in Warsaw, but it comes from abroad, from Germany, or so it seems to me. On the lid there is a label which has something on it in Egyptian style. I see a factory ... a place ... a lot of young girls working around these boxes. There are stacks of them.
There are no plates in the box now, it contains something that has no connection with them ... a gray object ... in glass ...no, in porcelain. I see fire ... it's not an object, -but a fragment, a small part. Oh, it's so old! Hundreds, hundreds of years old-it's a fragment of a prehistoric urn ... broken.... I see it, it looks like this
(here M. Ossowiecki described the shape by gestures).
It was found by someone digging in the ground-yes-I see sand, people turning the earth with spades. Ah! There is something else in the box--something white. I don't understand the connection between this object and the pharmacy-I see her in the pharmacy-here in Warsaw, Marszalkowska street- it's a lady buying that stuff." Here M. Ossowiecki stopped, saying that he felt tired.
Including intervals and conversation, the session lasted about 50 minutes.
Before opening the box M. Ossowiecki drew for us with a pen the shape of the object that was in the box. Then we untied the cords, removed the wrappings and before our eyes appeared a black box in which, some months ago, I received some photographic slides from Szalay's, which is situated in Chmielna Street, Warsaw.
They were delivered to me by one of the shop assistants, a slim lady who, as we verified later, was very fond of music. The box contained a dozen transparencies 8.5 x 8.5 cm in size.
We were not able to ascertain later who had taken the slides afterwards, nor if one of them had been broken. The plates came from the Ernemann factory at Dresden (in Germany). The label showed a woman's head looking rather like the head of Isis between Egyptian style columns. Inside the box we found a fragment of an urn wrapped in cotton wool and a label bearing the number 2. After opening the envelope marked with the same number we read the following description, signed by M.W.: "Fragment of a prehistoric urn, found by M. Wawrzeniecki in 1904 near Warsaw."
The cotton wool in the box that I sent to M.W had been bought by my wife in a pharmacy situated in Marszalkowska Street, Warsaw. So M. Ossowiecki's description was perfectly accurate and matched the true facts.