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Observations placeholder

Osty, Dr Eugene - Supernormal faculties in Man – M. de Fleuriere 's impressions of Madame Magdalena Duplex



Type of Spiritual Experience


A description of the experience

Supernormal faculties in Man- Dr Eugene Osty

On June 5th, 1922, I said to M. de Fleuriere: "With your permission I shall shortly bring to you some person whom I shall choose. I shall ask you to reveal all you can concerning that person at a single sitting. I shall take down your exact words and publish them. Do you agree? "

The offer was accepted, and we fixed the seance for June 12th. My difficulty was to find anyone of strong personality willing to have his life revealed before a witness, willing also to make frank avowal of the facts, and to allow them to be published. Only one person came forward, her interest in metapsychic science overcoming the natural reluctance everyone feels to lay bare the intimate events of their lives. This lady, whom I will call Madame Magdalena Duplex, made one condition-that her name, which is borne by others, should not be given.

Detail of the sitting. On June 12th, at 9.45 a.m, I arrived with Mme Duplex at M. de Fleuriere's house. Nothing was said but the usual courtesies. M. de Fleuriere and Mme Duplex had never seen each other before. I had known her for about two months, superficially, as a mere acquaintance.

Mme D. sat down by M. de F. who, as his-custom was, placed his left hand on one of hers, remained in meditation for a minute with half-closed eyes, and then, without stopping, as if he were narrating a known incident, spoke these words that I took down in abbreviated writing just as dictated, and wrote out in full immediately after the séance

 "Your essential fluid is that of a nervous-sensitive, with the addition of a sanguine-bilious-muscular fluid tempered by the emotional-sensitive fluid. In a word it is a fluid of essentially feminine nature, but exalted by a kind of masculine fluid more vigorous and energetic.

Activity, impulsiveness, and vivacity predominate, and there is great power of physical and moral control

Through this fluid can be distinguished a lively natural intelligence, quickened by many general ideas derived from study, reading, intercourse with the world and experience of life. Easily to be discerned are a taste for the beautiful and the good, high aspirations, great cerebral activity, almost too great, somewhat feverish, a passionate interest in philosophical, psychic, and metapsychic questions, and desire to know whatever goes beyond the ordinary and the commonplace, whatever pertains to the transcendental and the marvellous.

I see that before coming to me you have visited many persons having certain gifts or a certain notoriety.

 You have a secret desire to express your ideas and impressions on these matters whether by speech or writing. You will write articles for the papers.

Unfortunately there has always been opposition between your speculative ideals and the positive realities of your life, which up to the present has been full of struggles. These discords have been most frequent in matters of the heart, in your family, and in the pecuniary prospects and professional career of your husband, a career which, I may remark, has certainly been of a liberal and intellectual kind.

Happily the vital or fluidic energies of your physical and moral personality are-still considerable, and give me the impression of a long life. This life will not be without some tough shocks, your health especially will experience some passing ailments, cerebro-nervous aneamia, arthritis, and excess of biliary secretion.

Nevertheless, on following out the evolution of your life to its decline there is comfort, for it seems crowned as if with a rainbow of four bright colours, indicating favourable conditions from the moral, physical, family, and material points of view. There will be greater tranquillity than in the past, for-your past has been disturbed by many preoccupations and shocks, and by a number of deaths, some of which-have brought you much_ pain, especially those of your father, your mother, and of Alfred, your husband.

I will not hide from you that there are still clouds on your horizon and anxieties which are even now causing you trouble. They relate more especially to the future of your children, and to a somewhat precarious pecuniary position, and failing resources.

It might be compared to a pond of no great depth, whose surface is further reduced by dry weather and is now at its lowest. But in the future I see its level sensibly raised by little streams that flow into it. In other words, the situation will be maintained without disaster and will be improved by your personal efforts, by certain advantageous transactions, and by using certain fortunate opportunities that will come to you.

In this connection I see shaping itself a happy development by the moral and material help of some devoted friends, among whom women play no appreciable part, men only being in action and predominating. In this relation I see round you many links with the world by reason of the professional and social standing of your deceased husband. The feminine element shows duller and thinner, while the masculine is dotted with brighter spots, I mean with more characteristic figures.

One among them is more accentuated and interesting to you. There is a gentleman, who is married, and whose pecuniary condition is impaired and causes him much disquiet. Fundamentally he is good, sensible, affectionate, and intelligent, but at times cold, variable, and almost insane: and you suffer sometimes from his changeable, wounding, and enigmatical attitude.

Nevertheless there are profound affinities between you, and links that will cause him to play a part more and more decisive in your life.

As to your family, your children are visibly your chief care. These children appear like a bouquet of three buds, among which are distinguishable two feminine and one masculine. Their establishment in life is still incomplete, and none of them has reached a settlement.

But I see events in preparation, notably marriages which will be favourable from different points of view.

It seems that the life of one of your daughters will contain two great emotions; two men will play preponderant parts in it; one might conclude that she will be married twice. In any case you will have several grandchildren.

Without wishing to give you pain by speaking of doleful anticipations, I know that you will be affected by two deaths, directly or indirectly, but in this I do not allude to your children.

Your name signifies 'duality,' and your first name is curious, it comes to my ear as 'Lena,' the last two syllables of Magdaleine, the Latin form of your name Madeleine. Your maiden name seems foreign and might come from Alsace, Germany, or Austria, as Muller is of German origin.

I have said that your children showed like three buds, but there must have been a fourth, for another bud is fallen; you must have lost a child

As to your husband, I have said that he belonged to a liberal profession, he was a barrister and also in politics; sometimes he incurred much hostility, there have been dangers, threats, rancour, and excitement against him with reference to a lawsuit, which seems to have been a struggle in his professional life.

He died some years ago, but relatively not very long since, towards the end of the war."


Analysis of the indications given classifies them as follows:

Ten deal with the future and cannot be pronounced upon.

Fifty-five are concerned with the moral temperament, the personal conditions or the surroundings of Mme Duplex. Out of these, fifty-four were recognized as exactly true, and she confided to me the realities to which they referred. One only seemed to her doubtful: the monetary worries of her friend, who seemed a very rich man. I have, however, heard from her over the telephone that, contrary to what she thought, M. de Fleuriere was right on this point also. I draw the reader's attention to the correctness with which the subject has reproduced the names: Alfred (the husband's name), Magdalena, that of Mme D. herself, and the diminutive Lena, with which she was accustomed to sign her letters; and I can add that her maiden name is of Austrian origin, as M. de Fleuriere said.

Before leaving this excellent instance of metagnomy, I think it useful to record an observation M. de Fleuriere allows me to make. In our conversations on supernormal faculty, he has several times confided to me that he is endowed with an impeccable memory of what he has read and of his metagnomic seances, the words returning to him under the form of large printed letters that he has the sensation of reading as one reads a book. This occasion seemed a suitable one to prove what he had stated. Said he, "You have written down my words one by one; to-morrow I will bring you a copy of them from memory, and you can compare the two. He did as he said. The two corresponded exactly word for word.

The source of the experience

Osty, Dr Eugene

Concepts, symbols and science items


Science Items

Activities and commonsteps