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Tyndall, John – Science and the Spirits – 04 Low knocking was heard from time to time under the table

Identifier

024815

Type of Spiritual Experience

Background

A description of the experience

SCIENCE AND THE "SPIRITS”

During the conversation a low knocking was heard from time to time under the table. These, I was told, were the spirits' knocks. I was informed that one knock, in answer to a question, meant "No"; that two knocks meant "Not yet,” and that three knocks meant “Yes”.

In answer to a question whether I was a medium, the response was three brisk and vigorous knocks. I noticed that the knocks issued from a particular locality, and therefore requested the spirits to be good enough to answer from another corner of the table. They did not comply; but I was assured that they would do it, and much more, by and by. The knocks continuing, I turned a wine-glass upside down, and placed my ear upon it, as upon a stethoscope.

The spirits seemed disconcerted by the act; they lost their playfulness, and did not recover it for a considerable time.

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Spiritualism:  A Narrative with a Discussion – Patrick Proctor Alexander
APPENDIX.  Professor Tyndall 'on science and spirits: ‘

….. some of the main facts made use of by the Professor, as disposing of the Spiritual phenomena, being meantime on the physical ground unintelligible to me, I must for the present decline to assign any weight to them.

 ‘The knocks continuing, I turned a wine-glass upside down, and placed my ear upon it, as upon a stethoscope. The Spirits seemed disconcerted by the act ; they lost their playfulness, and did not quite recover it for a considerable time.'

 As the glass thus used as a stethoscope  could merely a little, by vibration from the wood, intensify the sound of the knocks, and could by no possibility avail to give hint of their true cause or origin, I do not quite see how the Spirits, unless very stupid indeed, should have been seriously disconcerted by an act so entirely unmeaning on the Professor's part.

The source of the experience

Tyndall, John

Concepts, symbols and science items

Concepts

Psychokinesis

Symbols

Science Items

Activities and commonsteps

Activities

Commonsteps

References