A Look at Physical Manifestations (Continued):
By Rev. Simeon Stefanidakis
Phenomena of Physical Mediumship
Spirit works with physical
mediumship in a number of ways. Apparently, there is no limit to what Spirit
can do, provided the proper conditions prevail. Here are some of the
phenomena witnessed in physical circles:
This is the most fundamental
use of ectoplasm. The ectoplasm is released from the medium's body, and the
operator demonstrates how it can be fashioned and directed. This becomes a
demonstration of Spirit's ability to influence matter via the directed use
Ectoplasm can be used to move
objects. During a demonstration such as this, the spirit operator might
mold the ectoplasm into hardened rods and direct these rods to the
underside of an object and cause the object to be lifted. This is known as
levitation and usually -- although not always -- involves the production of
an invisible form of ectoplasm. Objects known to be levitated have ranged
in weight from a few ounces to hundreds of pounds.
Whenever we conduct a program
on physical mediumship at the Church, we conclude by sitting in circle
around a table. In this, we have never failed to produce remarkable
movements, which have ranged from tables swaying back and forth and in
circular motion, to tables levitating off the floor.
Here, the Spirit operators
create an ectoplasmic voice box, through which they can speak physically
and audibly to all present. This is often done using a small conical
device, known as a trumpet. The trumpet acts very much like the cabinet, in
that the energies are focussed inside the
trumpet. The trumpet is often levitated around the room, with the Spirit
people speaking through it.
A very interesting phenomenon
witnessed during direct voice is the shifting in the strength of the voice,
as the energy level and harmony change. When the voice first begins, it is
often very garbled and difficult to distinguish. As the energy is built up,
the voice becomes more powerful and more easily understood. Toward the end
of the session, when the energies begin to diminish, so, too, do the
quality and clarity of the voice. In fact, this gradual peaking and diminishing
of phenomena is quite common in all forms of physical manifestations.
Here, Spirit causes something
to materialize in the sitting room, apparently from nowhere. The apported
object sometimes does and sometimes does not remain. Often, the
materialized object is dematerialized back to where it came from. Stones,
gems, animals, ancient relics, and even people have been known to be
apported into seance rooms.
This is a common form of
activity observed in circles for physical mediumship. The Spirit people
cause sharp raps to be heard, often from within the table they are sitting
around. A code can be established through the raps, thus creating a means
of conveying specific messages to the sitters.
This is another common
occurrence in physical circles. Flashes or balls of light appear, often on
or near the vicinity of the medium himself or herself.
The Creme de la Creme of Physical Mediumship
In materialization, the Spirit
people use ectoplasm to create an image or molding of themselves. The
degree and strength of the materialized form varies quite a bit. A
full-form, head-to-toe materialization of a spirit is, perhaps, the most
amazing phenomenon witnessed in mediumship.
There are countless recorded
cases where spirits have materialized fully, with full dress and facial
features. Some have been as clear and solid as an earthly body. Spirit has
even been known to go to the extent of creating fingerprints on their
materialized hands. Materialized spirits have been known to walk among the
sitters; talk to the sitters via direct voice; touch, hug, and kiss the
sitters; allow the sitters to touch them; materialize in front of the
sitters; pass through walls; and dematerialize before the sitters.
A most interesting phenomenon
seen during materialization is the physical link between the materialized
form and the medium. After a spirit materializes and walks away from the
medium, there can be seen a cord of ectoplasm linking the spirit form with
the medium. This ectoplasmic cord can be likened to the umbilical cord of a
fetus. Through it, the spirit operator receives a supply of etheric
energy-matter from the medium. The spirit may dematerialize by withdrawing
the ectoplasm back into the medium's body via this cord.
A specific form of
materialization, whereby the spirit operator uses the ectoplasm to mold his
or her face over the face of the medium, is known as transfiguration.
These are a few of the more
common means by which Spirit uses the energies of the physical medium for
the production of phenomena. Again, there seems to be no limit to what
Spirit can do through physical mediumship, provided the proper conditions
Physical Mediumship Is So Rare
During the last century, up
until around the 1930's, physical mediumship was very common, and the
strength and range of phenomena were amazing. Today, it is quite rare.
There are two basic reasons for this:
Earlier on, when modern Spirit phenomena was relatively new, people needed
to see. They needed objective evidence of Spirit's presence; thus, the
preponderance of physical manifestations. As people began accepting the
reality of mediumship and, then, yearning more for teaching and philosophy,
the occurrence of physical mediumship began to lessen, while mental
mediumship began to predominate. In other words, the needs of Humanity
dictated how Spirit would respond to those needs -- always the case with
The development of physical mediumship can be a lengthy process; sometimes
tedious, with nothing happening in the circle for months or even years;
requires great commitment on everyone's part; and generally revolves around
the development of one, maybe two, people in the circle, with the other
people sitting to help them in their development.
people are just not geared to putting this amount of time and effort --
sometimes totally selflessly -- into the development of any form of
mediumship. In earlier years, sitting in circle was, often, what people did
to socialize. Most of the great pioneer mediums began by sitting in a home
circle. Today, this is simply not the case.
Thus, today, the occurrence,
as well as the nature, of physical mediumship is nothing like it was a
century ago. However, we have noticed during the last decade that there
seems to be a resurgence of interest in physical mediumship and,
consequently, a resurgence in the development of physical mediums. Where
this will lead, only time will tell.
is Spirit is Spirit
As we stated: Mind over
matter; that is what physical mediumship is all about. If this is so, and
if we are all Spirit, can those of us in the body create such
Spiritualism will answer with an empahtic and
resounding, "NO. Only Spirit out of body can create such
manifestations." My question is: why should that be the case?
Spirit is Spirit is Spirit.
In the 1970's, this very
question was put to the test by the Toronto Society for Psychical Research,
in conjunction with the New Horizons Research Foundation. Their findings
were published, in 1976, in the book "Conjuring Up Philip: An
Adventure in Psychokineses."
Very briefly, the story goes
like this: a group of people decided to meet regularly, just as they would
if sitting for mediumistic development, with one major difference: they
decided to create a fictitious character, whom they later called
"Philip." Little by little, as the meetings continued, the
character of Philip was being created by everyone present. More and more
details were being woven into the life story of Philip. Finally, the group
decided to put their experiment to the test. They wanted to see if
phenomena -- attributed to "Philip" as the operator -- would
occur. They got more than they bargained for.
Remember, they were sitting to
experiment with psychokinesis, not mediumship. Psychokinesis, or PK, is the
movement of objects via the directed use of INCARNATE mind. The most noted
subject of research in PK is Uri Geller.
Not only did the Philip group
get PK phenomena, they got levitation and direct communication, through
raps, from Philip. But, they did NOT achieve any actual manifestation of
Philip. The picture to the right is a drawing of Philip, as created by the
The debate is this: Were the
phenomena a result of mass hallucination? Was this a genuine demonstration
of the group's energy, collectively known as Philip, manifesting itself as
Philip? Or was Philip actually a person, in Spirit, who decided to work
with this group and telepathically fed the group information about himself
and his earthly life and, then, through the power of physical mediumship --
with the group (or, perhaps, one person) acting as the medium -- physically
The conclusion of the Philip
group, itself, was that it was strictly PK at work here. In other words,
the combined mental energies of the group, focussed
through the "person" of Philip, was the source of the
What do you think? We would
love to hear your comments on this.
Regardless of what actually
happened with the Philip group, the results were amazing.
A full recording of the Philip
group can be found in: "Conjuring Up Philip" by
Iris M. Owen, with Margaret Sparrow. Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited,
Ontario, Canada. 1976. ISBN 0-88902-003-5.
Thus it is with physical
mediumship. Some mighty amazing phenomena have occurred through this
vehicle of Spirit interaction and communication. As phenomenal as it all
is, the implications behind physical mediumship are even more phenomenal.
If spirit intelligence can do all this, what else can it do? If this is
what the directed use of mind can produce, what other uses can there be for
this tool of the Spirit, known as the mind? If we are Spirit in body -- and
we ARE -- what are we capable of accomplishing, once we unlock the hidden
mysteries of the mind? And, when we do unlock those mysteries, shall we
have attained the maturity to use this knowledge wisely?
These questions go right to
the very roots of mediumship in general, not just physical mediumship. This
is why mediumship is so important for us all, today. This is why Spirit
comes to us in the first place. Throughout human history, Spirit has come
to reveal to us all one basic truth:
is Spirit; We are Spirit; That is how we are all One
Put away the psychic hot
lines; put away the crystal balls; put away the tarot cards. What Spirit
wishes us to know and appreciate is very simple and very basic.
Furthermore, it should be enough to unify us all, as brothers and sisters
of the Spirit; all members of one family, with one God as our Parent.
Many thanks to Ms.
Rosemarie Pilkington for correcting me on the fact that the Philip group
did NOT achieve any physical manifestation of Philip.
Here is information on how to
order our highly acclaimed Study Guide on
Developing Mediumship and Channeling.
Photographs of Physical Phenomenon
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