Osty, Dr Eugene - Supernormal faculties in Man – Mme Jean Peyroutet reads the life of a colonial manager
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Supernormal faculties in Man- Dr Eugene Osty
Circumstances and conditions.
In May, 1922, M. Germain D. gave me a letter from his friend, M. Augustin F.-M., with the purpose of verifying what could be obtained by way of information on the life of the latter with which he was very fully acquainted.
On May 23rd I profited by this opportunity to discover whether the faculty possessed by Mme J. Peyroutet of perceiving minor approaching events in a life would be competent to delineate the main outlines already past. I knew that the letter was from M. Augustin F.-M., and was aware of his name, his profession, and place of abode. Mme Peyroutet was ignorant of his existence. He had been living for a long while in a distant colony.
On the day of the experiment, M. Germain D. was in Paris, about three and a half miles from where we were, and M. Augustin F.-M. was in Indo-China. At Mme Peyroutet's request, the letter was placed in the middle of the table. She did not touch it till towards the end of the sitting. At first she spoke while manipulating cards; subsequently she looked at some white of egg that she had poured into a glass of water at the beginning of the sitting. Finally she took the letter, turning it about in her hands. She has found that she gets her notions of the moral state and general course of life by the fall of the cards, and the forms, aspects of places, things and people from the glass of water.
It is of psychological interest to note that her metagnomic perceptions arrive by fits and starts, in unconnected phrases, without any co-ordinating idea. In one she will speak of the character, in another of the illness of a child; another speaks of a voyage, etc. etc., reverting by complementary phrases till she has accumulated enlightening matter in the chaos of her words.
In giving the example I shall rearrange these chaotic phrases according to the matters on which they bear. With this percipient it is necessary to do this. The words of Mme Peyroutet.
"This is about a gentleman. I think he is very dark . . or rather his hair is of two colours; it is getting grey, grey and dark. He holds himself very upright . . a good carriage.
He is rather nervous, lively, whimsical, good-hearted, but changeable in mood. Not avaricious, but very orderly. Methodical. Rather dictatorial. Not always easy to get on with strong-willed. Not proud. He is a man who has made his own position.
What an adventurous life. Many travels.
His mother was widowed when he was quite young, and soon after there were several widows among his near relations.
He had a mistress who affected his life deeply. She spent much of his money. He seems to have speculated, and owed money. While still young he was threatened by the law, with imprisonment. He had money lent him. He left the country when young, of his own accord. . . He has passed through much trouble has had to do much work before succeeding. He has striven, and not always been lucky. . . . What troubles, what surprises, changes and chances.
A death of someone, a sudden death of a near relation, by apoplexy.
He seems to be married now, and has recently lost a child.
He has a kind of administrative post, travels, engaged in enterprises; he is associated with other men of business.
It is very far from Paris; I should not like to have to walk there. He is living in a town, a little outside it . . there is what looks like a river - water round it. An isolated house standing by itself.
He often takes a boat; he seems to have a little boat of his own.
He has to do with products from the ground.
Now the whole surroundings change, I do not see many houses now; those that are there, are built on pillars.
He is thinking of getting married, as if he were going to marry his mistress. A little child is playing there.
He is thinking of returning to France. I think he means to buy a house near Paris.
On his journey he will be ill, likely to die."
The record of this sitting was communicated to M. Germain D., who was surprised at the accuracy of the information as far as he knew the facts. The history of his friend's life is as follows, in brief:
When about eighteen he was enamoured of a young woman, and the need of money led to malversation of funds that led to a threat of legal proceedings, from which he was saved by the help of a friend.
Resolved to expiate his misconduct, he enlisted in the colonial infantry, and when his time had expired he settled in the colony. His place in a large carrying company was precarious, but his activity and intelligence in subordinate duties led in the end, after much hard work, to an assistant managership, and then to being manager.
He is a man of fifty-two, his hair is brown and getting grey. He has become a person of some importance in the colony. He travels much and has a steam launch.
Living in the maritime town where the principal offices of his Company are situated, he has often to go into the interior, to the rice-fields and plantations, where the native houses are built on piles.
He is, in fact, anxious to return to France, and rest after thirty years of hard work in a tropical climate. The marriage with a mistress is a possibility. He has lived long with a woman of the country, by whom he has had two children. One died two years since.
As to the voyage to France and a serious illness on the way, that is a premonition still to be verified.