Book: "Raymond or Life and Death"

Author: Sir Oliver Lodge FRS

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- (Part 2) Chapter 13 - Supernormal Portion -

On OJL Sitting with Peters


          ON the 29th of October I had a sitting with Peters alone, unknown to the family, who I felt sure were still sceptical concerning the whole subject. It was arranged for, as an anonymous sitting, by my friend Mr. J. Arthur Hill of Bradford. The things said were remarkable, and distinctly pointed to clairvoyance. I am doubtful about reporting more than a few lines, however. There was a great deal that might be taken as encouraging and stimulating, intermixed with the more evidential portions. A small part of this sitting is already reported in Chapter III, and might now be read by anyone interested in the historical sequence.

A few unimportant opening lines I think it necessary to report, because of their connexion with another sitting:

Anonymous OJL. Sitting with A. Vout Peters at 15 Devereux Court, Fleet Street, on Friday, 29 October 1915, from 10:30 to 11:45 a.m.

(Sitter only spoken of as a friend of Mr. Hill)(1)-

PETERS. - Before we begin, I must say something: I feel that I have a certain fear of you, I don't know what it is, but you affect me in a most curious way. I must tell you the honest truth before I am controlled.-

(1) Whether it be assumed that I was known or not, does not much matter; but I have no reason to suppose that I was. Rather the contrary. Peters seems barely to look at his sitters, and to be anxious to receive no normal information.

[Whatever this may mean it corresponds with what was said at the previous M. F. A. L. Sitting, p. 132, though M. F. A. L. had sat as a friend of Mrs. Kennedy in her house, and I sat as a friend of Mr. Hill in Peters's room,
and no sort of connexion was indicated between us].

(Soon afterwards the medium twitched, snapped his fingers, and began to speak as 'Moonstone':-)

"I come to speak to you, but I must get my Medie deep; we get superficial control first, and then go deeper and deeper; with your strong personality you frighten him a little; I find a little fear in the medium. . . . You bring with you a tremendous amount of work and business," etc.

Now I get a new influence: an old lady, medium height, rounded face; light eyes; grey hair; small nose; lips somewhat thin, or held together as suppressed; a lady with very strong will; tremendously forcible she is. She passed away after leading a very active life. . . .

She's a very good woman. It is not the first time she has come back. She tells me to tell you that they are all here. ALL. Because they are trying to reach out to you their love and sympathy at the present occasion, and they are thanking you both for the opportunity of getting back to you. "We are trying all we can also to bring him back to you, to let you realise that your faith, which you have held as a theory" - it is curious, but she wants me to say her message word for word-"as a theory for years, shall be justified." Then she rejoices . . . (and refers to religious matters, etc.). [This clearly suggested the relative whose first utterance of this kind is reported so long ago as 1889 in Proc., S.P.R., Vol. vi. P. 468 & 470.1

Now she brings up a young man from the back. I must explain what we mean by 'the back' some time.

OJL.-But I understand.

He is of medium height; somewhat light eyes; the face browned somewhat; fairly long nose; the lips a little full; nice teeth. He is standing pretty quiet.

Look here, I know this man! And it is not the first time he has been to us. Now he smiles, 'cos I recognise him [so pronounced], but he comes back very, very strongly. He tells me that he is pushing the door open wider. Now he wants me to give you a message. He is going to try to come down with you; because it looks to me as though you are travelling to-day. "Down," he says. "I come down with you. We will try" (he says 'we,' not 'I), "we will try to bring our united power to prove to you that I am here; I and the other young man who helped me, and who will help me."

[The association of Raymond with 'another young man,' and his intention to come 'down' with me when I travelled back home on the 'same day to meet Mrs. Kennedy there, are entirely appropriate.- OJL]

Look here, it is your boy! Because he calls you 'Father'; not 'Pa,' nor anything, but 'Father.' [True.]

OJL.-Yes, my son.

Wait a minute; now he wants to tell me one thing: "I am so glad that you took such a commonsense view of the subject, and that you didn't force it on mother. But you spoke of it as an actuality. She treated it like she treats all your things that she couldn't understand; giving you, as she always has done, the credit of being more clever than herself. But when I came over as I did, and in her despair, she came to you for help; but she wanted to get away from anything that you should influence."

[Unfortunately, some one knocked at the door - a servant probably, wanted to come in and clear the room. The medium jerked and said, "Tell them to go away." I called out, "Can't come in now, private, engaged." Some talking continued outside for a little time-very likely it was some one wanting an interview with Peters. After a time the disturbance ceased. It was not very loud; the medium ignored it, except for the rather loud and strong knock, which certainly perturbed him.]

Tell me where I was.

(I repeated: "She wanted to get away from anything that you should influence.")

Oh yes. He wants to say that you were quite right in staying away and letting her work altogether by herself. She was able to do better than if you had been there. You would have spoilt it.

Your common-sense method of approaching the subject in the family has been the means of helping him to come back as he has been able to do; and had he not known what you had told him, then it would have been far more difficult for him to come back. He is very deliberate in what he says. He is a young man that knows what he is saying.

Do you know F. W. M.? L.-Yes, I do.

[The next portion, relating to Myers, has been already reported in Chapter III; and the concluding portion, which is rather puzzling, shall be suppressed, as it relates to other people-]

Towards the end 'Moonstone' began talking about himself, which be does in an interesting manner, and I shall perhaps give him an opportunity of saying more about the assumption of 'control' from his point of view. Meanwhile I quote this further extract:

'Moonstones' Account of Himself

Have you been suffering inside? OJL.- No, not that I know of.

Your heart's been bleeding. You never thought you could love so deep. There must be more or less suffering. Even though you are crucified, you will arise the stronger, bigger, better man. But out of this suffering and crucifixion, oh, how you are going to help humanity! This is a big work. It has been prophesied. It is through the sufferings of humanity that humanity is reached. It must be through pain. Let me tell you something about myself. I was Yogi - do you understand?

OJL.-Yes; a kind of hermit. 

I lived a selfish life: a good life, but a selfish one, though I didn't know it then. I isolated myself and did not mix with people, not even with family life. When I go over, I find it was a negative goodness, so then I wanted to help humanity, because I hadn't helped it. I had not taken on the sufferings even of a family man. It was useless. And so that is why I came back to my Medie, and try to bear through him the sorrows of the world. It is through suffering that humanity is helped. That is one great thing in your beautiful religion; you know what I mean-the sacrifice of Jesus. He demonstrated eternity, but to do it He must be sacrificed and taste death. So all who teach the high . . . must tread the same path; there's no escaping the crucifixion, it comes in one way or another. And you must remember, back in the past, when the good things came to you, how you began to realise ( ?) that there was a spirit world and a possibility of coming back. Though you speak cautiously, yet possibly in your prayers to God you say, "Let me suffer, let me know my cross, so that I can benefit humanity"; and when you make a compact with the unseen world, it is kept. You have told no one this, but it belongs to you and to your son. Out of it will come much joy, much happiness to others.

Mr. Stead was, I understand, a friend to Peters, and how much of the above is tinged by Mr. Stead's influence, I cannot say: but immediately afterwards his name was mentioned, in the following way:

Flashing down the line comes a message from Mr. Stead. I can't help it, I must give it. He says: "We did not see eye to eye; you thought I was too impetuous and too rash, but our conclusions are about the same now. We are pretty well on the level, and I have realised, even ,through mistakes, that I have reached and influenced a world that is suffering and sorrowing. But you have a world bigger and wider than mine, and your message will be bigger and will reach farther."


As far as evidence is concerned, Peters has done well at each of the three sittings any member of my family has had with him since Raymond's death. On the whole, I think he has done as well as any medium; especially as the abstention from supplying him normally with any identifying information has been strict.

It is true that I have not, through Peters, asked test questions of which the answers were unknown to me, as I did at one sitting with Mrs. Leonard (Chapter IX). But the answers there given, though fairly good, and in my view beyond chance, were not perfect. Under the circumstances I think they could hardly have been expected to be perfect. It was little more than a month since the death, and new experiences and serious surroundings must have been crowding in upon the youth, so that old semi-frivolous reminiscences were difficult to recall. There was' however, with Peters no single incident so striking as the name 'Norman,' to me unknown and meaningless, which was given in perfectly appropriate connexionn through the table at Mrs. Leonard's.



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