Osty, Dr Eugene - Supernormal faculties in Man – Mme Morel describes the person from a letter supplied by Canon Berthucat, the Principal of the College of Lourdoueix-Saint-Michel
Type of Spiritual Experience
A description of the experience
Supernormal faculties in Man- Dr Eugene Osty
Circumstances and conditions
In 1912, in the course of experiments to ascertain the function of the object placed in the hands of metagnomic subjects to connect them with distant persons, I received from Canon Berthucat, the Principal of the College of Lourdoueix-Saint-Michel (Indre), a letter containing a photograph in a separate envelope, without any particulars of the person represented, with a request to ascertain what it could convey to the metagnomic subject that I was then experimenting with. On March 8th, Mme Morel being under hypnosis,-I took the photograph from the envelope, and without looking at-it, placed it face downwards in her hand. My thought can therefore have conveyed nothing; but having looked at the photograph at the end of the seance, I am able to say that I learned nothing from it.
Detail of the sitting.
I said to the percipient, "speak of the person represented on this photograph."
"A woman appears to me she vanishes. . . . Ah! there is a man in her-place, over there, very clear . . . a dark man appears before me, he is ill . . . his brain is troubled … his face is very sad . . he is ill and in pain . . his head is tired. . . . I see him often surrounded by many persons, quite boys. . . . I see hundreds of faces fluttering round him, all quite young, in uniforms."
I perceived that Mme Morel had directed her metagnomy on the Canon who had sent me the letter, living among the boys of his college and suffering from digestive troubles and neurasthenic depression. I said to the subject, “It is not of the person who sent the photograph that I want you to speak, but of the one photographed”
"Then I go back to the time when the photograph was taken. . . . I see a young man with chestnut hair, very lively, a quick brain, much imagination, keen looking, full of curiosity, deep. . . .-I see at a certain time much struggle . . great crises.
I see a man profoundly discouraged and very tired, extremely tired.
Later on I see him ill. I see his head affected and one limb. . . . Then, very-strange, I do not see him like other people; his image becomes vague, undefined, fading away . . . now it is nearly invisible. I see an inanimate body. . . ."
Then she cried out,
"I see all the hands, all the heads of those who have touched this thing. Take it away, I am frightened."
I took the- photograph and placed it in my pocket. The subject went on,
"I see this man stretched out; he is pale; strangely pale; he passes before me as a body without thought or movement. He is dead; I now see him quite close."
"Look at the death scene. See what he died of."
"I cannot tell that exactly because I have nothing belonging to him he has not touched the photograph.
I have a strong nervous feeling in my limbs, and in my head. I look into his body . . . I see no organ diseased . . . I feel fever in the brain, that is all . . a sudden fever . . the body is burning hot . then cold. It is a sudden illness, a quick transition from full life to death. I feel a nervous pain, something in the head."
On March 17th the Canon sent me the information given below after reading my account of the seance.
"Herewith the information I have to check Mme Morel's visions:
The original of the photograph is dead, as she has seen and said. He was Mr. A-, and died aged thirty-eight.
His character was briefly as described.
As to the material struggles of which she speaks I know nothing This gentleman had bought a stockbroker's business, then in very low water. He made it successful by dint of work and energy. It is possible that he had times of lassitude and discouragement. During that time he made great efforts for two years to save the life of his young wife. As to his illness, that began with violent headache. His brain was affected and for a while one limb .was paralysed. He died of meningitis or some acute cerebral disease, the doctors could not quite say. Death came in fifteen days."